Archived News Release from 2009
For Immediate Release
Redwood City Receives “Silicon Valley Water Conservation Award” for Innovation
Redwood City, CA - March 23, 2009 – Redwood City’s Water Conservation Program has received the Silicon Valley Water Conservation Award in the “Innovation” category, for its work in assisting large landscape irrigation customers to save water. This award, presented by the Silicon Valley Water Conservation Coalition (www.waterawards.org), reflects the City’s commitment to providing its large landscape water customers with conservation tools, tips, incentives, and techniques, and recognizes Redwood City’s leadership and innovation in water conservation.
Beginning in 2001, the City of Redwood City began an aggressive conservation program aimed at its large landscape irrigation customers (in addition to its significant household and neighborhood water conservation programs). Since that time, Redwood City has developed individualized water budgets for all of its landscape irrigation customers and provided this information to customers as part of a water conservation education program – so far this program results in a savings of approximately 15% of the total water used by this class of customers.
Redwood City also recently implemented a Water Allocation Program for this same customer class which combines use of the individual water budgets with a new set of landscape irrigation rates to provide an even greater incentive for these customers to conserve. Though this program is relatively new and the savings have not yet been measured, the program has the potential to save as much as 30% of total water use for this customer class, or an incredible 430 acre-feet (about 140 million gallons) per year. Actual water savings will be tracked and reported as the program is implemented.
A key component of the large landscape irrigation customer Water Allocation Program is the installation of an Automatic Metering Infrastructure (AMI) for all landscape irrigation accounts, allowing water use data to be available to the City every hour in order to most efficiently identify leaks and notify customers. Additionally, these large landscape water customers can go on-line to their own water use budget and hourly water use data for comparing water use to budget at any point in the billing period. This use of technology, combined with an aggressive “inclining block rate” pricing structure, is cutting edge in the field of water conservation, and Redwood City’s experience serves as a model for others to follow.
Many water conservation tools and a great deal of information for large landscape water customers as well as residential and business water customers are available at www.redwoodcity.org/conservation. Visit Redwood City’s award-winning website at www.redwoodcity.org for information about the City and its services, the community, recreation programs, education, City government, and local business. Subscribe to Redwood City’s newsletters or other City documents at www.redwoodcity.org/egov.
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