Archive for the 'Water Conservation' Category

NewGrass and Xeriscaping Go Hand In Hand

Tuesday, June 21st, 2011

If you’re considering xeriscape landscaping for your home or garden, NewGrass® gives you the option of including lush, green lawn as part of your eco-friendly, super-water-wise ground design.

“NewGrass® gives any xeriscape design an added dimension of rich texture, natural beauty and healthy green color all year and in any climate,” said company president Greg Goehner.
According to the informational web site About.com, xeriscaping is essentially a “landscape design that has been carefully tailored to withstand drought conditions.”

Xeriscape landscaping can take many forms. For some, it’s simply grouping plants with similar watering requirements together on the landscape. For others, xeriscape landscaping means using only plants that are indigenous to the region, and relying only on natural rainfall or reclaimed water.

Whatever xeriscape means to you, and however much you want to reduce your household’s water consumption, a NewGrass® synthetic lawn can be a natural choice in a xeriscape design for a number of reasons:

  • NewGrass® requires virtually no watering and no fertilizers or pesticides, so it’s a perfect match for low-water-use, environmentally conscious landscaping.
  • NewGrass® offers even the most rigorous xeriscape design an area where your pets can play and roam – and where the kids can play, too!
  • NewGrass® fits into hard-to-access areas and in garden landscapes that have irregular borders or planting configurations.
  • NewGrass® naturally complements any form of shrub, plant, garden rocks or gravel.
  • Compared with natural turf grass, NewGrass® significantly reduces the number and kinds of pests and insects, aiding your entire xeriscape design.
  • NewGrass® is certified 100% eco-friendly, made in part from recycled products and is itself totally recyclable.

Rebates, Incentives for Synthetic Grass Continue

Tuesday, October 19th, 2010

Summer may be over, but drought conditions that persist around the country, combined with suburban growth in arid regions of the Southwest and West, continue to keep water conservation on everyone’s mind.

So it’s not surprising that cities and water conservation districts continue to pay homeowners, businesses and even schools to “go synthetic.” In some areas, however, the demand for rebates to property owners who tear out existing natural turf and replace it with artificial lawns, such as NewGrass, was so high that their water agencies have run out of money for the programs.

The Southern Nevada Water Authority has cited turf replacement as a key element of a long-range plan to heighten local conservation efforts. The water authority – the region’s wholesale water supplier – is also expected to make most of its existing drought restrictions permanent. These include prohibiting front lawns and limiting the size of back lawns for new homes.

Earlier this year, for the first time in its history, the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, Southland, implemented two consecutive years of mandatory water supply reductions. Continuing environmental restrictions in the district’s Northern California supply are were cited for perpetuating shortage conditions and driving costs higher.

Despite the water use restrictions in Southern California, SoCal WaterSmart program on June 1 discontinued offering rebates for synthetic turf installation after two years.

The Soquel Water District, which services serves more than 49,000 customers in mid-Santa Cruz County, Calif., offers rebates to residential and commercial customers who replace existing high-water-use turf grass with low-water landscaping or synthetic turf. The rebate is $1 per square foot up to $1,000 for a single-family home and up to $3,000 for commercial and multi-family housing landscapes.

In Albuquerque, N.M., the city water commission offers as much as $500 to residents who convert even part their lawn to landscaping that needs little water or to artificial grass.
Arizona is entering its second decade of a statewide drought from a lack of long-term precipitation and increased demand for water, and state water officials have asked residents, businesses, schools, institutions of higher learning, local governments and federal agencies to increase their water conservation efforts.

Tempe, Ariz., now in its 10th year of drought, pays homeowners to remove grass and plant cactus. Along with paying homeowners up to $500 each to remove grass, Tempe offers grants up to $20,000 to businesses that reduce water consumption by at least 15 percent.

Several Arizona cities offer other rebates to homeowners who replace their lawns with artificial grass:
• Peoria: up to $550
• Mesa: $50 – $225
• Scottsdale: up to $1,500 for residential customers, $3,000 for commercial properties
• Glendale: up to $750

For details on other Arizona participating cities visit the Arizona Municipal Water Users Association’s Web site.


Rebates for Synthetic Grass are Back in Southern California

Monday, October 5th, 2009

The largest water district in California has again begun providing rebates for customers who replace their water-hungry sod grass with synthetic turf, such as NewGrass, the artificial grass of choice for homeowners who want to be water-wise, eco-friendly have more green lawn to enjoy year-round – and the rebates are once again being offered on first-come first-served basis.

The revived SoCal Water$mart rebate program was restarted with $9 million for rebates and relies on local municipalities and water providers to at least match the $.30-per-square-foot rebate for homeowners in participating areas who replace their water-thirsty, pesticide-needy sod grass with synthetic lawn. Fake grass is among the water-saving devices and products that are again eligible for rebates through the SoCal Water$mart, an effort of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWD).

“We’re excited that the MWD has realized the importance of this rebate program, and found the money to support it again,” said Larry Reno, district manager for NewGrass Landscape & Design, California’s premier synthetic lawn company. “We’re ready to help customers make the environmentally conscious and water-saving switch to artificial grass and get any rebates they’re eligible for.”

Pasadena is among the cities that has stepped up to match the SoCal Water$mart rebate. A spokeswoman for Pasadena Water and Power told news outlets that that synthetic grass saves many thousands of gallons of water that would otherwise go towards watering one of the most thirsty of all plants – grass.

For several months, no money was available for the SoCal Water$mart rebate program, and before the funds ran out, interested homeowners had to make a reservation to get a rebate because of the impending drying up of funds. Even with the program reinstated, officials are advising customers that funding is limited and submitting a rebate application does not guarantee receiving a rebate. Rebates will be issued on a first-come, first-served basis until funding is exhausted.

You can find out how much funding remains in the rebate program by visiting the MWD website. To determine how much your rebate from your municipality or local water provider would be, Click here to apply for rebate.

A federal court this summer curtailed water deliveries from northern California due to environmental factors in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. After a record dry spring that dramatically curtailed snow runoff from the Sierra Nevada mountains, Governor Schwarzenegger declared an official statewide drought in early summer.

Following the Governor’s action, the MWD board of directors issued a Water Supply Alert for its six-county service area, urging local jurisdictions to adopt and implement water conservation ordinances and to significantly increase efforts and programs to conserve water.


San Diego Water Campaign a Reminder of Water-Wise Benefits of NewGrass

Thursday, March 12th, 2009

As mandatory water restrictions appear increasingly likely for San Diego County, water officials have launched a public awareness program to help residents alert their neighbors who may be wasting water.

The public awareness campaign is another call to homeowners in Southern California that they must be more diligent in finding ways to reduce water consumption, said Paul Parker, owner of San Diego backyard Adventures, an authorized supplier of NewGrass synthetic lawn.

NewGrass® synthetic lawn requires no watering. And because it eliminates the need for lawn pesticides and fertilizers, NewGrass® artificial grass also helps protects ground water and storm drainage systems.

The San Diego County Water Authority has begun distributing 1.75 million door hangers that have a checklist of wasteful yard-watering practices on one side and a list of recommended tips that can save thousands of gallons of water on the other.

Although the water authority’s door-hanger campaign targets wasteful watering of natural turf grass and other landscaping, waterless grasses such as NewGrass® have been recognized as a valid water-conservation measure by many California water agencies.

An estimated 750 square feet of fake grass can conserve about 22,000 gallons of water per year. California officials estimate up to 70% of a family’s water use is for landscaping. Depending on other landscaping, that much water can be saved with an artificial lawn.

“The bottom line is that an artificial turf cuts water consumption, while also providing an environmentally friendly and safe lawn for the family and for pets,” said Fred Espinosa, whose Smartscapes of San Diego is another authorized NewGrass distributor.

San Diego is not alone in its concerns over water, of course. California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger proclaimed a drought state of emergency Feb. 27, and called upon all urban Californians to reduce water use by 20 percent or face mandatory cutbacks down the road.

Larry Reno of NewGrass Landscape & Design, with authorized NewGrass installation teams in both San Diego, Los Angeles and San Francisco areas, said residents in both parts of the state are increasingly concerned about how to conserve water.

“Even in today’s very tough economic times, people are realizing something has to give when it comes to having a safe, green lawn and saving water,” Reno said. “The rebate programs can sure help.”

The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, along with the Family of Southern California Water Agencies, currently offers rebates of 30 cents for each square foot of artificial grass that’s installed in either new construction or to replace existing natural turf grass.

Some Southern California cities meanwhile directly issue rebates for synthetic grass directly, rather than having residents apply to the Water District. These include Anaheim, Beverly Hills, Burbank, Compton, Fullerton, Glendale, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Pasadena, San Fernando, San Marino, Santa Monica and Torrance.

Because home irrigation systems usually operate in the early morning or late evening, many homeowners may not notice problems or malfunctions in their own irrigation systems, the San Diego water agency said.

“These door hangers are a positive means for neighbors to help neighbors save water,” said Maureen Stapleton, general manager of the San Diego County Water Authority. “It gives residents a convenient way to alert their neighbors to a potential outdoor water wasting problem, such as a leaking sprinkler or an irrigation system left on during a rainstorm.”

Mandatory conservation is still very likely this year because 2009 follows two critically dry years in California, the authority said. Also, 2009 continues to receive below-normal rainfall and snow pack while severe regulatory restrictions on water deliveries from the State Water project – the source of about 30 percent of San Diego County’s water supply last year – also remain in effect.

To get information about local drought ordinances, conservation tips, rebates and water-saving information are available at www.20gallonchallenge.com.


NewGrass a Perfect Fit in Xeriscape Designs

Friday, September 12th, 2008

If you’re considering xeriscape landscaping for your home or garden, NewGrass® gives you the option of including lush, green lawn as part of your eco-friendly, super-water-wise ground design.

“NewGrass® gives any xeriscape design an added dimension of rich texture, natural beauty and healthy green color all year and in any climate,” said company president Greg Goehner.
According to the informational web site About.com, xeriscaping is essentially a “landscape design that has been carefully tailored to withstand drought conditions.”

Xeriscape landscaping can take many forms. For some, it’s simply grouping plants with similar watering requirements together on the landscape. For others, xeriscape landscaping means using only plants that are indigenous to the region, and relying only on natural rainfall or reclaimed water.

Whatever xeriscape means to you, and however much you want to reduce your household’s water consumption, a NewGrass® synthetic lawn can be a natural choice in a xeriscape design for a number of reasons:

  • NewGrass® requires virtually no watering and no fertilizers or pesticides, so it’s a perfect match for low-water-use, environmentally conscious landscaping.
  • NewGrass® offers even the most rigorous xeriscape design an area where your pets can play and roam – and where the kids can play, too!
  • NewGrass® fits into hard-to-access areas and in garden landscapes that have irregular borders or planting configurations.
  • NewGrass® naturally complements any form of shrub, plant, garden rocks or gravel.
  • Compared with natural turf grass, NewGrass® significantly reduces the number and kinds of pests and insects, aiding your entire xeriscape design.
  • NewGrass® is certified 100% eco-friendly, made in part from recycled products and is itself totally recyclable.

NewGrass, Rebates Can Mean Big Savings

Thursday, August 14th, 2008

Fort Worth, Texas – Replacing traditional sod grass with an artificial lawn like NewGrass® will not only cut your water bill dramatically, it could actually put money in your pocket.

More and more water agencies and cities are not only encouraging synthetic grass as a way to conserve water. Many of them, especially in the West and Southwest, are offering rebates for artificial lawn installation.

Water districts and artificial grass industry groups estimate that between 60% and 70% of a homeowner’s average water bill is used on landscaping – and most, if not all of that amount, is used to keep the lawn green.

The average U.S. household consumes 101 gallons of water per day per person, according to published information. For a family of four, that’s nearly 12,290 gallons a month on average. During peak lawn-watering months, that means the average family of four is using between 7,374 and 8,603 gallons a month to water their lawn and shrubs.

A NewGrass® yard virtually eliminates the need to water your lawn. You may want to water your synthetic lawn occasionally to clean off debris or accumulated dust. But for the life of the lawn, that’s about it. (NewGrass® carries a 10-year manufacturer’s warranty.)

You can estimate your own outdoor water use by taking a look at your monthly water bills and multiplying the total amount (either the number of gallons consumed or the dollar amount you pay) by 0.6. Your local water district may be able to give you a better idea of how much water is used in your area on outdoor landscaping.

There are also several web sites to help you calculate your household’s water use, both inside and outside. Three of those are:

  1. Water Budgets.com
  2. The California Urban Water Conservation Council
  3. The Desert Water Agency

In addition to trimming your water bill, you may be eligible for cash rebate for replacing your sod grass with faux grass or installing synthetic lawn from the get-go. The list of cities and water districts that offer rebates is constantly changing. The best thing to do is call you local water utility company and ask about their rebate program.

To get an idea of what’s out there, you can visit the Association of Artificial & Synthetic Grass Installers Web site to get more information about many cities and districts that currently offer rebates including:

  1. Arizona – Flagstaff, Tempe, Glendale, Phoenix and Scottsdale
  2. California has several active and pending programs
  3. Colorado has several active and pending programs
  4. Oregon has programs under consideration
  5. Washington has programs under consideration
  6. Nevada has several active and proposed programs
  7. New Mexico has rebate programs

NewGrass® is proud to be an ally in the EPA’s GreensScape Program and the only artificial lawn that is Certified 100% Eco-Friendly, from the way it is manufactured to the company’s pledge to properly recycle any NewGrass® lawn at the end of its usable life, at no cost to the customer.

NewGrass® has been featured on Bob Vila, The Balancing Act on Lifetime Television, Fine Living TV’s American Shopper, Makeover and a Movie and a special Think Green episode of Designing Spaces on We tv and TLC – The Learning Channel.


Southern California’s Largest Water District Joins Others Offering Rebates to Homeowners Who Replace Natural Turf

Thursday, July 26th, 2007

Los Angeles, Calif. – The Los Angeles-based Metropolitan Water District of Southern California this month immediately began offering offer homeowners what it calls a “modest” rebate to install synthetic turf.

Water officials said the program is the first of its kind in Southern California. A handful of Northern California communities offer similar programs (we list those below).

The Metropolitan Water District is Southern California’s main water supplier, serving nearly 18 million people in six counties. The new rebates cover the agency’s entire service area.
What the district actually did was add synthetic grass to its list of water-saving devices that qualify for financial incentives. The rebate program will now pay 30 cents for every square foot of turf a homeowner replaces, or between 2 percent and 3 percent of the local estimated retail cost of $12 per square foot, said district spokesman Bob Muir.

For complete information about the district’s rebate program, visit http://www.bewaterwise.com/rebates01.html.

Other California water districts and agencies that have rebate programs encouraging the use of water-friendly landscaping such as NewGrass™ include:

Soquel Creek Water District
Rebates of $2 per square foot for synthetic grass that replaces an existing lawn.
http://www.soquelcreekwater.com/Turf_Rebate.htm.

Santa Clara County
Rebates of up to $1,000, or $75 per 100 square feet (whichever is lower) for homeowners (up to $10,000 for commercial, industrial and institutional properties)
http://www.valleywater.org/Water/Water_conservation/index.shtm.

North Marin Water District
Cash rebates of $50 per 100 square feet of regularly-irrigated lawn that is removed, up to $400 for a single-family dwelling, $100 for a townhouse or condominium, and $100 for an apartment.
http://www.nmwd.com/c4g.html.


Mesa, Ariz., Starts Offering Rebates for Replacing Turf Lawns

Wednesday, July 25th, 2007

MESA, Ariz. – Mesa is launching a Grass-to-Xeriscape rebate program today that will pay residents up to $500 to switch from water-thirsty turf grass to more water-friendly alternatives such as synthetic lawns like NewGrass™.

Residents who remove 500 square feet or more of established turf grass and replace it with a water-conserving alternative qualify for a rebate of $1 per square foot of grass that is removed, up to a $500 maximum rebate. To qualify, you must be the current owner of a single-family home in Mesa and be a Mesa city water customer.

Applications are being mailed to all residential water customers this week. Complete information is available at http://www.cityofmesa.org/utilities/conservation/grass-to-xeriscape-rebate.aspx.

Mesa joins a list of Valley cities in the Phoenix area that offer the rebates to homeowners who replace their lawns with artificial grass or other water-friendly xeriscape alternatives. Visit the following Web sites for more information:

Peoria: up to $550 (http://www.peoriaaz.com/utilities/conserve/)

Tempe: up to $500 (http://www.tempe.gov/conservation/LandscapeRebate/program.htm)

Glendale: up to $750 for an existing homeowner, $200 for a new home, (http://www.glendaleaz.com/waterconservation/landscaperebates.cfm) and $3,000 for a business, homeowner associations or multi-family property (http://www.glendaleaz.com/waterconservation/nonresidentialrebate.cfm)

Scottsdale: up to $1,500 for a residence (http://www.scottsdaleaz.gov/WaterConservation/turf-res.asp) and up to $3,000 for a commercial property (http://www.scottsdaleaz.gov/WaterConservation/turf-com.asp)


Tree-Ring Data Reveal Extended Droughts May Become More Severe

Wednesday, February 28th, 2007

LAS VEGAS – Future droughts in the West and Southwest United States may be longer and more severe because of a regional warming trend that shows no signs of letting up, according to a new report from the National Research Council.

The report concludes that although technology and conservation will not solve the challenge of limited water supplies in the long run, conservation measures are necessary.

Because 60 percent to 80 percent of all residential water use in the Southwest is used on lawns, it only makes sense that switching to a synthetic lawn like NewGrass™ can have a major positive impact on water conservation efforts.

The Public Policy Institute of California, a San Francisco-based think tank, has said, for example, that residential lawns in California could help suck parts of the state dry. A report from the institute says that although the issue is of more concern in hot, inland areas in the Central Valley that are growing, even the state’s coastal communities will eventually feel the pinch.

A long-term water conservation research project sponsored by the country’s third-largest public utility company, in Arizona, has put synthetic grass side-by-side with natural local grasses and xeriscaping to determine artificial grass’s long-term feasibility. The Salt River Project (SRP) is sponsoring the research as part of its ongoing efforts to help give consumers new and better information about water conservation alternatives.

Reconstructions of the flow of the Colorado River over hundreds of years based on studies of tree rings show that average annual flows vary more than previously assumed and extended droughts are not uncommon.

The Natural Research Council study says very strong evidence suggests that rising temperatures will continue to reduce the river’s flow and water supplies, potentially affecting the flow of water to southern California, Nevada, Arizona and Colorado. The report further warns that coping with water shortages is becoming more difficult – the result of rapid population growth and rising temperatures.

The combination of limited water supplies, rapidly increasing populations, warmer regional temperatures and the likelihood of recurrent drought all point to the potential for endemic conflict among current and future water users, the report concludes. [more]

Greg Goehner, president of NewGrass™ said that public awareness of the need to conserve water is increasingly becoming a reason people choose to replace their natural turf lawns with artificial grass.

“More and more, it’s not only a lifestyle choice,” Goehner said. “It’s not only about having a lawn they can really enjoy or that their kids can play on all year. It’s that, plus the water savings they seem to be realizing we need to achieve over the long term.”

Ernst Smirden, a scientist at the University of Arizona, chaired the panel that conducted the study for the National Research Council, part of the National Academy of Sciences.

“The preponderance of scientific evidence certainly suggests that the warmer temperatures will reduce Colorado River-flow and water supplies in the future,” Smirden told National Public Radio. “We think, in all probability, there will be droughts in the future that will be more severe than anything that we have experienced.”

Exceptionally dry conditions in much of the Colorado River basin in recent years, along with new stream-flow reconstructions based on tree-ring data, prompted the Research Council to convene a panel to examine how weather and climate trends might affect the river’s future flows.

For many years, understanding of the river’s flow was based primarily on records from stream gages. But the tree-ring data is transforming that understanding by demonstrating that the river occasionally shifts into decades-long periods in which average flows are lower, or higher, than the 15 million-acre-feet average of the record the gages show.

In particular, the tree-ring reconstructions show that the years 1905-1920 were exceptionally wet. This is significant because the Colorado River Compact that governs the allocation of water between upper and lower basin states was signed in 1922 – when it was assumed that annual average river flow was closer to 16.4 million acre-feet. Tree-ring data also indicate that extended droughts are a recurrent feature of the basin’s climate.


More Water Districts Studying, Endorsing Synthetic Grass for Water Conservation

Monday, October 23rd, 2006

An increasing number of water districts and cities are seeing the benefits of NewGrass™ and other synthetic lawns as a viable, proven water conservation measure.

In California, the Soquel Creek Water District, which serves 49,000 customers within mid-Santa Cruz County, recently began offering rebates to residents who replace their natural turf lawns with artificial grass.

The district noted in publicizing the effort that “making the switch to faux turf can save thousands of gallons of water every month.”

The agency recently began offering customers a rebate of $1 per square foot of synthetic grass, up to $300. The rebate will be in the form a credit on a customer’s water bill after their installation is inspected and approved.

To battle misunderstandings of synthetic grass, the district laid down a sample plot bordered by native plants at its district offers as part of two hands-on workshops in 2005.

Las Vegas Expanding Current Program
The Souhern Nevada Water Authority recently re-launched its Water Efficient Technologies (WET) program with more flexible rules and bigger rebates. The program is aimed at enticing more businesses and government entities to improve their water efficiency.

The cap on any entity’s total incentive was tripled, from $50,000 to $150,000. Since participants are paid based on how much water they conserve, tripling the cap could also triple the amount of water saved, Doug Bennett, the authority’s conservation manager, told local news media.

As of August, the authority said WET had paid out almost $590,000 in incentives to 22 businesses and government entities. Combined, those 22 customers have saved more than 268 million gallons of water annually.

WET offers a one-time financial incentive to customers who replace older, less efficient water systems and cut their water use by at least 500,000 gallons a year. Participants can use just about any method of improving efficiency, including the use of artificial grass, like NewGrass™.

The agency said that even with the new rules, WET is unlikely to approach the level of success seen by the water authority’s best-known conservation initiative, the turf rebate program.

Since 1999, that program has paid residents and business owners specifically to replace their lawns with desert landscaping and is credited with eliminating more than 72 million square feet of water-guzzling turf grass in the Las Vegas Valley.

The rebate program reported reaching two milestones this year: It exceeded 20,000 landscape conversions and pushed its annual water savings past 4 billion gallons.

Two Other California Districts Move Ahead
Back in California, a water district in the High Desert region of San Bernardino County recently began offering customers rebates of 40 cents for every square foot of natural turf that they replace with low-water-use, desert friendly landscaping – which can include products like NewGrass™. Eligible projects in the Victor Valley Water District’s Cash-for-Grass Program must be at least 1,000 square feet, which means a rebate of at least $400 per customer.

“With the unprecedented growth the High Desert has experienced, many new homeowners do not know that approximately 70 percent of their water usage is for outdoor landscaping and water uses,’’ the district’s Web site explains. “While many homeowners and business owners enjoy the look of a lush, green lawn, they find that our desert climate makes maintaining such a yard costly and time consuming.”

Water officials in Central Orange County, California, recently reported the results of a trail “Turf Replacement Project.” The Irvine Ranch Water District and the cities of Irvine, Lake Forest, Newport Beach and Tustin installed about six acres of synthetic lawn like NewGrass™ in six public parks.

The idea was to see how much water could be saved using synthetic grass and also raise public awareness of the “new generation” of synthetic lawns.

After three months, the study determined that the 7,837 square feet of artificial grass would save an estimated 149,917 gallons for water annually, or about 2.56 acre feet a year.

The installations also were well-received by the public. The district said the program generated calls from residents for information about synthetic lawn rebate programs and about the product in general, a report on the project said.


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