Defeating the drought


Tyler White

Simon takes all the water he can get, even if spiders laid eggs in the hose.

Maggie Sweeney, editor in chief

The lack of rain in California has caused problems throughout the state, but Carlsbad has taken efforts to improve the poor conditions. Recently, the city of Carlsbad has implemented new rules to help conserve as much water as possible. With these rules in effect, Carlsbad can contribute its savings throughout the state to help desert communities.

On Aug. 1, the Carlsbad Municipal Water District announced a drought response Level 2  due to the decline of supply water. The drought will become increasingly worse unless California gets rain, but until then, Carlsbad is attempting to save as much water as possible.

“I’ve definitely noticed the results of the drought,” sophomore Rebecca Allen says. “People’s lawns are getting browner and it never rains anymore.”

The new drought rules Carlsbad has put into effect are recommended by the city because the results could have an incredibly positive affect on the city’s water supply. Homes with street addresses ending in odd numbers can irrigate on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. Homes with street addresses ending in even numbers can irrigate on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday. Apartments, businesses and condos can irrigate on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. All irrigation sessions can last for no more than ten minutes and must be between the hours of 6 p.m. and 10 p.m.

“The new rules should affect the environment in a positive way, but we haven’t seen a large impact yet,” Environmental Manager Elaine Lukey says. “We have seen a reduction in water usage by Carlsbad residents in the last couple of years due to the public outreach and educational efforts by the Carlsbad Municipal Water District, as well as the County of San Diego Water Authority.”

Carlsbad’s recycled water program is greatly increasing as a cause of the drought. The program’s expansion is helping conserve water by reducing the city’s demand on the limited drinking water supply. Eighteen miles of new pipes are being added to the existing 79, potentially increasing the amount of recycled water by three million gallons a day. Due to the additional filtration and disinfection, recycled water is practically drought-proof.

“The water we use today is the same water that people used thousands of years ago,” Lukey says. “Treating it for reuse on a large scale like at the recycled water facility, mimics natures way of treating and reusing water in a more natural ecosystem.”

Not only does the recycled water benefit the drought issue, it also helps Carlsbad save some money. Without pulling more water from other areas of the state, Carlsbad is able to use the extra money to spend on city necessities and environmental supplies.

“Clean water is one of the main resources that humans need to survive,” Lukey says. “It is imperative that we figure out a way to use our local resources in a more sustainable manner, in order to maintain a good quality of life.”