Unprecedented water restrictions in Southern California

Unprecedented water restrictions in the Los Angeles area went into effect Wednesday. The city in the western United States, like almost all of California, has been gripped by severe drought for the third year in a row.

More than six million customers have been affected by these measures, which significantly restrict watering to one day a week and only in the cold season, subject to fines and reduced flow penalties.

The goal is to reduce water consumption by 35% in the area supplied by the Metropolitan Water District (MWD) of Southern California, which covers 19 million people or almost half of the state’s population.

“We do not have the resources to meet the usual demands and now we have to choose between watering our lawns and watering our children, our grandchildren and our daily lives,” the MWD official briefly announced of the restrictions. At the end of April.

Climate change

The district, which operates on behalf of 26 local agencies, relies on resources hundreds of kilometers away for its water supply. Nearly a third of it comes from Northern California, through 21 dams and a vast network of more than 21 miles of canals and pipes that carry water south from the Sierra Nevada mountains.

Due to the severe drought caused by climate change, the state water project announced that it would be able to meet only 5% of the regular supply to the MWD this year.

Instead of limiting watering to one day a week, district client agencies also have the option of reducing water use to more than 300 liters per person per day. This is the option chosen by the city of Los Angeles, where irrigation is now restricted to two days a week.

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According to experts, 70% to 80% of urban consumption in Southern California is water used for irrigation.

More than 97% of California was in a ‘severe, severe or exceptional’ state of drought on Wednesday, according to the US Drought Laboratory’s weekly bulletin. Many dams and reservoirs are much lower than normal before the onset of summer.

The Colorado River, another important water source used by millions of people in southern California and the western United States, has also been badly affected.


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