• By The Financial District

California Bans Waste Of Water As Drought Persists

In a clear sign that the drought is far from over, the state of California has adopted new mandatory regulations to stop residents from wasting the state’s water — the second time in a decade the state decides to restrict the use of water.

Photo Insert: This man-made river in California shows the extent of the drought hitting the state.

While the new restrictions are fairly mild, not respecting them could still cost $500 in daily fines, Fermin Koop reported for ZME Science.

The state’s Water Resources Control Board, which manages water resources, implemented the new rules after a previous call by Governor Gavin Newsom for a voluntary 15% reduction in water use compared to last year – a target that wasn’t met. The restrictions could take effect as soon as January 15th and have a one-year expiration date, unless extended by the state.

“Climate change is challenging us to build drought resilience in our water infrastructure and management practices and at an individual level in our daily habits,” Joaquin Esquivel, chair of the State Water Board, said in a statement.

“Prohibiting wasteful water practices increases awareness of water as a precious resource.”

All the news: Business man in suit and tie smiling and reading a newspaper near the financial district.

For instance, Californians won’t be allowed to use potable water to irrigate grass on public street medians or landscaped areas between the sidewalk and the street. Using potable water for street cleaning, construction, decorative fountains, and artificial lakes will also be banned. There are a few exceptions, such as watering trees in street medians.

No other state in the West has implemented statewide restrictions on the use of water on a residential level, although much of the region is currently experiencing a drought. Instead, local governments and water agencies have been the ones setting policies.

Health & lifestyle: Woman running and exercising over a bridge near the financial district.

For example, Las Vegas implemented restrictions on planting grass in order to save water. The new restrictions on water use come after a very wet December, but authorities believe the wet trend won’t continue during the winter months, which are normally the wettest in California.

In mid-December, about 80% of the state was in extreme or exceptional drought. By the end of the month, only a third had those conditions, according to the United States Drought Monitor.

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