Governor Brown Signs Legislation Establishing Statewide Water Efficiency Goals

SACRAMENTO – Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today signed SB 606 by Senator Robert Hertzberg (D-Van Nuys) and AB 1668 by Assemblymember Laura Friedman (D-Glendale) to help the state better prepare for droughts and climate change by establishing statewide water efficiency standards.

“In preparation for the next drought and our changing environment, we must use our precious resources wisely. We have efficiency goals for energy and cars – and now we have them for water,” said Governor Brown.

SB 606 and AB 1668 establish guidelines for efficient water use and a framework for the implementation and oversight of the new standards, which must be in place by 2022. The two bills strengthen the state’s water resiliency in the face of future droughts with provisions that include:

  • Establishing an indoor, per person water use goal of 55 gallons per day until 2025, 52.5 gallons from 2025 to 2030 and 50 gallons beginning in 2030.
  • Creating incentives for water suppliers to recycle water.
  • Requiring both urban and agricultural water suppliers to set annual water budgets and prepare for drought.

“This is another important step in the Legislature’s focused effort to reengineer water policy away from crisis management and toward a 21st century approach. I want to thank the Governor and his staff for their creative vision, and my colleagues in both houses for their hard work to bring this across the finish line,” said Senator Hertzberg.

“Governor Brown challenged every Californian to embrace water efficiency during the drought, and with his signature on AB 1668, we’ll have the state working collaboratively with local governments and urban water suppliers to put in place water efficiency standards that will help every community focus on sustainability. It’s a balanced approach that puts efficiency first and gives water agencies the flexibility to embrace innovation and tailor their policies to meet the unique needs of their community,” said Assemblymember Friedman.

Today’s legislative action builds on Governor Brown’s ongoing efforts to make water conservation a way of life in California. The state responded to the most recent drought with emergency actions and investments and the advancement of the California Water Action Plan, the Administration’s five-year blueprint for more reliable, resilient water systems to prepare for climate change and population growth.

For full text of the bills signed today, visit http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov.

See the original release on the Governor’s site here.

This entry was posted in Climate Change, Drought. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Governor Brown Signs Legislation Establishing Statewide Water Efficiency Goals

  1. Victor Tognazzini says:

    “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” Einstein did not say it, but whoever did could have been describing California’s approach to water. Water conservation should always be a vital part of our lives, but it will not be a viable effort if there is no water to conserve. The western and southwestern United States will be experiencing a cyclical mega drought over the next fifty years. There is scientific evidence of this. California has not only failed to maintain current water retention infrastructure, but has not invested in any new infrastructure since the state’s population has doubled. The Governor and legislature seem to place the blame for California’s water shortage on farmers, ranchers and now the public, while each year’s rainfall and snow melt run out to the sea. An investment in water storage to meet the requirements of California’s population is absolutely essential. Further investments in desalinization facilities along the coast is also an essential part of securing the water needs of the state. The high speed rail envisioned by the Governor, if actually funded and completed, may pass through a dust bowl between population centers that may be drastically changed without embracing the need to conserve water resources by the construction of on stream and above and below ground storage. Establishing water efficiencies is a positive step, but will the future demand “water police” to ensure enforcement? Californians, and other western states, need to be aware of the challenges the near future holds regarding the availability of water and demand of those who govern and represent them that they plan for and construct essential storage facilities before it is to late to do so.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *