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.