Rebates available to encourage business community to reduce water usage amid extreme drought
Folsom, Calif. – As California prepares for another anticipated drought year, state and local leaders gathered on October 20 at a small business in the heart of Folsom to spotlight their drought-resilient landscape, made possible by a rebate offered from the Regional Water Authority (RWA). The rebate is an example of how local water agencies are working to help California businesses and residents reduce their water use and embrace water-saving opportunities like transitioning to low-water landscaping.
California Natural Resources Agency Secretary Wade Crowfoot highlighted the key role businesses across the region and state play in helping build a more water-resilient future for all Californians.
“Don’t let the cooler weather fool you, the drought is as bad as ever,” said Secretary Crowfoot. “We need Californians to continue to step up conserving water, which helps stretch our water supplies while new projects come online that help us adjust to this hotter, drier climate.”
State Water Resources Control Board Member Nichole Morgan joined Secretary Crowfoot in touting businesses that have taken advantage of landscape rebates and made saving water a top priority in their communities.
“Californians are making tangible progress toward our voluntary conservation goals, thanks in part to efforts like upgrading lawns to water-wise yards,” said Morgan. “Shifting the way we beautify our landscapes is vital to dealing with drought and adapting to the longer-term impacts of climate change. At the same time, it’s so important that we continue to care for our trees, because healthy trees contribute to a healthy environment.”
Mayor Kerri Howell of Folsom acknowledged how businesses that invest in water-wise landscaping are also investing in beautifying their communities.
“Republix Insurance is providing a great model for other businesses to take action and make a long-term investment in water efficiency,” Howell said. “The bonus is that they are also helping to create a beautiful Folsom and inspiring others to do the same.”
The Regional Water Authority’s Executive Director Jim Peifer underscored the collaboration among state and local agencies to encourage conservation during drought and create water systems that are ready to handle the weather extremes projected with climate change.
“Each of us has a role to play in reducing water use, and this goes hand-in-hand with larger adaptation strategies like the Sacramento Regional Water Bank,” Peifer said. “Working in partnership, we can create a 21st-century water system that is resilient to climate change here in the Sacramento region and in California.”
The Regional Water Authority’s innovative rebate program incentivized businesses within five miles of the Lower American River to upgrade their landscapes with more efficient irrigation and drought-tolerant plants. The program aimed to help reduce water use while protecting the river’s water quality by preventing overwatering and runoff that carries fertilizers and pesticides through storm drains directly to nearby waterways. More information about available rebates is available here.
To further drive the transformation from grass to drought-tolerant landscapes, the state is allocating $75 million to bolster the Save Our Water campaign, providing Californians with actionable tools and resources to conserve water. Governor Gavin Newsom also recently signed legislation to ensure more dollars can go toward helping residents transform lawns into water-wise yards to save water.
Fall is the ideal time to consider replacing lawns with drought-tolerant landscaping when weather conditions are optimal for new growth. Save Our Water encourages residents to check with their local water agency to learn more about rebates and other resources to help make the change. For more water-saving tips and information, visit SaveOurWater.com.
You can see video from the event on the Save Our Water Facebook page here.
You can learn more about the landscape makeover on BeWaterSmart.info here.
- The California Natural Resources Agency works to restore, protect and manage the state’s natural, historical and cultural resources for current and future generations using creative approaches and solutions based on science, collaboration, and respect for all the communities and interests involved.
- The State Water Resources Control Board works to preserve, enhance, and restore the quality of California’s water resources and drinking water for the protection of the environment, public health, and all beneficial uses, and to ensure proper water resource allocation and efficient use, for the benefit of present and future generations.
- The Regional Water Authority (RWA) is a joint powers authority representing nearly two dozen water providers serving 2 million people in the greater Sacramento region. Formed in 2001, its primary mission is to help its members protect and enhance the reliability, availability, affordability and quality of water resources. Learn more at org and BeWaterSmart.info.
- Save Our Water is California’s statewide water conservation program. Started in 2009 by the California Department of Water Resources, Save Our Water’s goal is to make water conservation a daily habit among Californians. The program reaches millions of Californians each year through partnerships with local water agencies and other community-based organizations, social marketing efforts, paid and earned media and event sponsorships. Please visit SaveOurWater.com and follow @saveourwater on Twitter and Instagram and @SaveOurWaterCA on Facebook.