»Drought

California is currently in the midst of one of the most severe droughts on record. In January of 2014, Governor Brown declared a drought State of Emergency. He asked for Californians to voluntarily reduce their water consumption by 20%. Rainfall has been below normal for three consecutive years now. A dangerous side effect of the drought is a much higher risk of wildfires. 2014 is expected to be the driest year on record.

Chapman's Sustainability Department is currently studying the campus' water use over the past few years, in order to come up with more sustainable practices that would conserve water. In the past, the university has committed to reducing water use by installing low-flow devices in on-campus housing. The washing machines located in the Residence Halls reduce water waste and are Energy Star rated. When parts and equipment at the school need replacing, an effort is always made to use more water-efficient models.

+-Water Conservation Tips

In order to help the community exercise smart irrigation practices, listed below are a few of the many ways to lessen water consumption and water waste:

  • Have a pet at home? Don’t pour the water left in their water bowl down the drain; use it to water potted plants.
  • A recent model dish washer will use 5-9 gallons of water, while an older model can use between 10-15 gallons. Remember to only wash full loads.
  • It takes 12,009 gallons of water to raise one pound of meat, while it takes 60 gallons of water to raise one pound of potatoes. Consider participating in Meatless Monday to reduce your water footprint.
  • Turn on the irrigation system and walk around the yard to make sure there are no emitters or sprinkler heads that are broken, clogged, or misaligned. Wasted water can quickly add up over time.
  • If you are using a 1.5 gpm showerhead and reduce your shower time by 1 minute, you’ll save 548 gallons of water a year. If you reduce your shower by 3 minutes, that saves 1,642 gallons of water. 
  • Adjust the lawn mower to cut at a height between 1.5 and 2 inches. A taller grass height provides more shade for roots and it holds soil moisture much better than shorter grass.
  • For many more ideas on water conservation in the home, visit the Water- Use it Wisely website.
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