The drought in California is halfway into its fourth year, affecting residents
with destructive wildfires and thirsty lawns. As of early August 2015,
wildfires across the state have consumed 134,000 acres. Endangered species
numbers dwindling and collapsing trees are just two of the ever-increasing
side effects of the dry weather.
Some farmers are switching to crops that don't require as much water,
and homes across the state are resorting to painting their lawns with
environmentally friendly solutions in the wake of continuous water bans.
San Diego County has some of the highest water prices in the state, with
prices doubling in the last few years. Farmers in the area are turning
away from citrus crops in favor of more dry-weather tolerant plans such
as grapevines. The area has seen a surge in vineyards in the last few
years. During 2014, farmers lost almost 6.6 million acre-feet of surface
water, and the reduced acreage cut roughly $2.2 billion in revenue. There
have been over 17,000 people who have lost full-time, seasonal and part-time jobs.
Early in 2015, Gov. Jerry Brown introduced mandatory water restrictions
for all cities and towns. They have been required to cut down on all water
usage by 25 percent. Farmers must now submit plans for water management,
and the reservoirs in the state only have about a year of water left .
Online drought shaming calls attention to those who fail to follow reasonable
conservation practices, in a social effort to reduce waste. In addition
to using less every day, other good conservation practices have come out
of the very dry situation. Green, water-conserving technology is helping
homeowners, businesses, and municipalities save more water than ever.
New homes are required to choose more drought-resistant landscaping, and
conservation fixtures are playing a large role in saving water.
To help the state get through these difficult times, Eco Plumbers has continued
its services in providing Niagara Stealth toilets. From January 1 to June
30, 2015, we installed 2,452 Niagara toilets (2,347 in California, 78
in Ohio, and 27 in Florida). From 2012 to 2014, we installed 3,415 Niagara
The average savings on one toilet is 9,000 gallons per year. For just the
toilets installed in 2015, that adds up to a savings of 22,068,000 so
far this year. Cumulatively, the savings from 2012 to 2015 is more than
52.8 million gallons. Future projections of toilet installations (3,140
new toilets) round that number out to more than 81 million gallons saved
by the end of this year.
With these continued efforts, The Eco Plumbers hopes to assist the state
of California further in the future and to help the people work through
this difficult time.