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6 months in, Encinitas water districts miss conservation goals

( / Courtesy photo)

The two water districts that serve Encinitas both fell short of their conservation mandates in November, and cumulative savings are below their goals.

Residents in the San Dieguito Water District cut back 9.2 percent in November, bringing the district’s cumulative reduction over six months to 20.6 percent, according to a recently released report from the State Water Resources Control Board. The state has mandated that the district slash 28 percent.

Due to the crippling drought, California in June began requiring that water agencies conserve. The mandate is scheduled to expire in February, but could be extended.

Customers in the Olivenhain Municipal Water District logged a 10.7 percent cutback in November, with a 29.3 percent cumulative savings over the six months. The district’s reduction goal: 32 percent.

Of the 24 member agencies that belong to the San Diego County Water Authority, three others are below their cumulative savings mandate: the Santa Fe Irrigation District, Fallbrook Public Utility District and Carlsbad Municipal Water District.

The state has threatened to slap water agencies that consistently miss their conservation targets with fines.

Encinitas water districts have sought to entice savings by stepping up education and enforcement of drought restrictions. Perhaps the most notable restriction is that residents are forbidden from watering more than two days per week, and only on certain days (the watering schedule can be found at omwd.org and sdwd.org).

Overall, residents across the state from June through November have slashed their water use 26.3 percent, meeting Gov. Jerry Brown’s order of a 25 percent cutback.

Water use was compared with corresponding months in the benchmark year of 2013.

Despite recent heavy rains, water officials say it’s key to keep conserving given the severity of the drought.


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