Water conservation efforts in the City of Phoenix
The City of Phoenix is always looking for ways the Southwest can thrive in a future with significantly less Colorado River water. Phoenix stands by its commitment to provide water to its some 1.7 million customers, and is taking proactive actions to ensure water deliveries and reduce dependence on the Colorado River.
The city of Phoenix provides drinking water to more than 1.5 million people. The City’s 2050 goal is to provide a clean and reliable 100-year supply of water.
Cynthia Campbell, Phoenix Water Resources Management Advisor, joined us on Arizona Horizon to give us an the overview of the Colorado River shortage and drought situation.
“If you looked at a pie chart of Phoenix in terms of its water use, about 60% or just under 60% of our water comes from the Salt and Verde rivers. That’s our local, renewable water resource from the White Mountains and the Verde Watershed,” Campbell said. About 40% of our water comes from the Colorado River, which doesn’t make it the most stable water resource, so the city is working on ways to reduce reliance on this resource.
She also addressed how the City of Phoenix is preparing for a drier future. Some of the City’s strategies include:
- Diversifying water sources and infrastructure improvements
- Collaborating with other stakeholders, such as agriculture and industry, to develop sustainable water use practices
- Implementing water conservation programs and incentives for residents and businesses
“Think About Water”
The City of Phoenix encourages residents to conserve water every day. Over the past 20 years, Phoenix’s per person water usage has dropped 20 percent. And total water use in Phoenix averages what it was 10 years ago. But water conservation can be part of a lifestyle. City officials offer these water conservation tips during the dry summer months:
- Outdoor water use: watering plants and lawns during early morning or late evening hours, using drought-tolerant plants, installing drip irrigation systems
- Indoor water use: fixing leaks, installing low-flow appliances and fixtures, taking shorter showers
- Encouraging the adoption of the “water-wise” lifestyle by educating the community on the value of water and the importance of conservation
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