Monday, Nov. 2, 2015

Big Dry too

California absorbs drought lessons from Down Under

Many Australian homes now have rainwater capture systems. ALBERT BARLOW / Rain Water Systems


KQED San Francisco

Australia has become a crossroads for California policymakers seeking clues to coping with long, arduous droughts. A group of state lawmakers spent the last couple of weeks Down Under, learning about the country's Big Dry — the worst drought in Australia's history. Spurred by the Big Dry, residential water use in Melbourne shrank to about 40 gallons per person, per day — including outside watering. Californians still average more than double that.


Modesto ready to take big steps in recycled water

Modesto Bee

Modesto is expected to take some big steps in a roughly $100 million project to send highly treated wastewater to drought-stricken West Side farmers as soon as 2018. Modesto, Turlock, Del Puerto, Ceres and Stanislaus County are partners in the North Valley Regional Recycled Water Program, in which Modesto and Turlock would deliver treated wastewater via the Delta-Mendota Canal to Del Puerto's farmers. Work on this project started in 2010.


Residents' water fines dry up in 'drought school'

Sacramento Bee

On a recent Saturday morning, 26 residents filed into a makeshift classroom at the city of Sacramento's Water Conservation Office near Executive Airport. Some looked annoyed, others a bit sheepish. All were here because they'd been fined $50 apiece for violating the city's water restrictions. By attending a one-hour class on conservation, they could get the fine cleansed from their record.

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