by PH Gleick, D Haasz, C Henges-Jeck, V Srinivasan, G Wolff, K Kao Cushing, A Mann

Pacific Institute, Oakland, CA


This report argues that so much water is currently wasted in California that the state’s urban water needs, now and into the foreseeable future, can be met simply by reducing waste. This study estimates that nearly one-third of California’s current urban water use is wasted and could be captured through improved technology, better economic policy and regulations, and public education. (Note that this report does not consider agricultural water use.) Opportunities for conservation include further replacement of faucets, toilets, etc. with water saving devices (40% conservation). Changes in irrigation management practices and technology represent an opportunity for a 32.5% reduction in outdoor water use. An additional savings of 40% is identified in the commercial, institutional, and industrial sector through, e.g., the use of recycled/reclaimed water for industrial cooling processes. The authors conclude that providing California’s urban water needs through conservation and greater efficiency would be much less expensive than constructing new water sources, or in most cases, expanding existing ones.drought, policy, water

Region: California
Publication Type: Technical report
Keywords: drought, irrigation, policy, and water