Drought

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Water Supply Update (1/13/22):

Drought is still here, even though more than 15 inches of rain has fallen in our watershed since Oct. 1, 2021. The preceding two years of record low rainfall left local reservoirs at an all-time low this summer and they are slowly recovering. As of Jan. 10, 2022, Sonoma Water is reporting storage in Lake Sonoma at 62% and Lake Mendocino at 69% of the target water supply.  

As the drought persists, it is important that everyone continues to practice daily water-saving habits to preserve our region’s water supply. During the month of December, Santa Rosa achieved a 13% savings in water use when compared to December 2020. For the months of July through December, Santa Rosa’s cumulative water savings is 23%, exceeding the 20% community-wide water savings target that remains in effect.

To continue to achieve the required conservation savings, it is essential for all customers to turn off their irrigation systems and focus on saving water indoors. This means taking shorter showers, washing only full loads of dishes and laundry, and turning off the tap when brushing teeth. Customers interested in making long-term investments in water savings are encouraged to replace inefficient appliances and fixtures with WaterSense labeled products

Despite the rain, drought is still impacting our region’s water supply and until our local reservoirs recover, it is critical that we continue to save water now.

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As of Jan. 13, 2022, Sonoma Water has provided the following water storage statistics:  

  • Lake Sonoma storage is at 62% of the target water supply 
  • Lake Mendocino storage is 68.7% of the target water supply 
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    Water Supply Update - December 13, 2021

    During the month of Nov., Santa Rosa achieved a 35% savings in water use when compared to Nov. 2020. Cumulatively, for the months of July through Nov., Santa Rosa’s community-wide water savings is 23%, exceeding the 20% water savings target. Additional Info...
  3. 300x189 _SANTA ROSA DROUGHT RESPONSE ENGJULYDEC

    Water Supply Update - January 13, 2022

    During the month of Dec., Santa Rosa achieved a 13% savings in water use when compared to Dec. 2020. For the months of July through Dec., Santa Rosa’s cumulative water savings is 23%, exceeding the 20% community-wide water savings target. Additional Info...
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    Santa Rosa is currently meeting its water savings goals for July through October with a 23% reduction in water use when compared to the same months in 2020. Additional Info...
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    Water Supply Update - October 14, 2021

    During Sept. water conservation savings dropped and it is critical that we continue to achieve necessary savings through at least December. We must save water now to preserve remaining supplies in Lake Sonoma and lessen impacts next year. Additional Info...
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    Santa Rosa Reduces Water Use by 22 Percent in July and August Additional Info...
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    Santa Rosa Adopts Mandatory 20 Percent Reductions in Water Use

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Santa Rosa Adopts 20 Percent Mandatory Reduction and Restrictions on Water Use

In response to regional water supply conditions, including historically low reservoir storage, the Santa Rosa City Council adopted a mandatory 20 percent community-wide reduction in water use along with prohibitions and restrictions on use on June 29, 2021. The following restrictions and prohibitions apply: 

WAter Waste

Water waste due to breaks, leaks, excess use, and runoff from properties due to overwatering is prohibited. 

  • This includes leaking faucets, toilets, and appliances, as well as broken irrigation pipes, leaking irrigation valves, and broken sprinkler heads, and runoff from properties due to overwatering or mis-directed sprinklers.
  • Report Irrigation Water Waste
Pressure Washing

Washing sidewalks, driveways, and patios with potable water is prohibited.

  • Instead use a broom to save water and get your surface clean.
Hose Nozzle

Hose end shut-off nozzles are required for all hoses.  

Restaurant

Restaurants may only serve water upon request. 

Hotels

Hotel and lodging establishments must message about the drought, including laundering of linens only upon request.

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Pressure washing with potable water (except for public health and safety) is prohibited unless a variance is obtained from Santa Rosa Water. 

  • A pressure washing variance, which is issued to a power washing company and is good for the duration of the Stage 3 drought declaration, must be obtained prior to work starting by emailing watersmart@srcity.org, including Power Washing Variance as the subject line. Please include the company name, and the reason for the variance request.
  • A variance is only granted for the following reasons:
    • Cleaning for health and safety reasons, including:
      • Cleaning of human or animal wastes for the specific area that is affected by the waste
      • Cleaning of food wastes at restaurants or other eating establishments for the specific area that is affected by the waste and/or as per permit requirements
      • Removal of graffiti in the interest of public safety
    • Construction processes where power washing of hard surfaces is required as part of the process, including:
      • Power washing of buildings as required for painting
      • Power washing of decks, patios, or other hard surfaces as required for sealing
    • Companies with Approved Power Washing Variances
Irrigation

Landscape irrigation is limited to the hours of 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. 

  • Checking your irrigation system for breaks and leaks during the day is encouraged, and is not in violation of this drought restriction.
  • Hand watering (with a hose nozzle) is allowed during the day.
  • Check your irrigation controller to confirm you're in compliance. Report any violations of this watering schedule at www.srcity.org/waterwaste.
  • Report Violations of this Drought Provision
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Portal

Track Your Water Usage Online

The best first step to achieving water savings is understanding how much water you use and when you use it. Santa Rosa’s WaterSmart Portal makes it easy for you to track and analyze your water use online and set alerts for high water-use. To access this water-saving tool, all you need to do is register your account using your customer number, account number, and last billed amount. Sign up today!

WaterSmart Cash for Grass Images

Cash For Grass Rebate

Santa Rosa Water has increased its Cash for Grass rebate as of July 12, 2021. Now removing a square foot of grass will earn you $1.50 with a maximum rebate of $1,500 and save you approximately 5,500 gallons of water each year. A pre-inspection is required before any work is started though, so call 707-543-3985 today to schedule an appointment.

Landscape

Free Landscape Design Templates

The Sonoma-Marin Saving Water Partnership has developed 8 free, scalable, water-efficient, front-yard landscape design templates. These are permit ready with your site specific modifications and user selectable options. However, there are some criteria that must be met in order for the plans to be applicable to your site.


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Water-Saving Tips

Santa Rosa Water is here to help you save water with tips, free water-saving devices, rebates, and more.  

Outdoors

  • Make sure all hoses have an automatic shut off nozzle (we provide free nozzles!).  
  • Limit irrigation to the hours of 8pm to 6am (less evaporation).
  • Use the City’s weekly WaterSmart irrigation recommendations to adjust irrigation schedules.
  • Replace high water use turf with low water use landscaping (contact us first – you could get a rebate!)   
  • Sweep hard surfaces instead of using water (driveways, sidewalks, patios).
  • If you need to get your car washed, go to sites that recycled the water.
  • Cover pools and spas when not in use to prevent evaporation.
  • Install a greywater system so you can reuse your laundry water to irrigate your yard (contact us first – you could get a rebate!).
  • Install rainwater capture system so you can reuse rain water later (contact us first – you could get a rebate!).

Indoors

  • Complete a do-it-yourself WaterSmart check up (we provide kits!).   
  • Check toilets for leaks every few months (we provide free dye tabs!) 
  • Replace old showerheads with high efficiency models (we provide these to customers for free!).
  • Fix leaks quickly.
  • Replace old faucet aerators with high efficiency fixtures (we provide these to customers for free!
  • Take shorter showers.
  • Turn off the faucet while brushing teeth or shaving.
  • Only run dishwashers and clothes washers with full loads.
  • Install hot water recirculating pumps (contact us first – you could get a rebate!).
Additional Resources_ Web Header

Has your private well gone dry? Report your household water shortage.

Californians experiencing water supply shortages with their private household wells (not for residents served by Santa Rosa Water) are encouraged to submit the Water Household Shortage Report. Document your private water supply shortage in a few easy steps and find available resources. 

*The information collected is intended to inform state and local agencies on drought impacts pertaining to household water supplies from private well or surface water sources. 

Water Efficient Landscapes: Guidance for Homeowners Associations (HOAs) - Click Here

Disclaimer:  Santa Rosa Water is providing this information to guide HOAs and homeowners, particularly as the City, the County, and the State are implementing measures to deal with the ongoing drought emergency.  This is intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice.  HOAs and/or their individual homeowner members should seek legal advice where appropriate or work with the relevant public agency in the event that any questions arise about specific matters relating to HOAs and the legal restrictions that apply to HOA governance or the legal rights of residents within an HOA. 

Current Water Supply Conditions

Our watershed is currently experiencing what may become the driest period ever recorded, but we can all do our part to preserve and extend our water supply through this dry period. For water-saving tips, tools, and resources, visit srcity.org/WaterSmart 

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watersmart@srcity.org

707-543-3985

8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.