San Diego Water Campaign a Reminder of Water-Wise Benefits of NewGrass
March 12, 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.