Water conservation

Newsom urges water conservation in executive order

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — The latest wave of wet weather still isn’t enough to lift California out of drought.

After California experienced its driest three months this year, Governor Gavin Newsom on Monday signed an executive order in an effort to boost water conservation.

Newsom is asking state water regulators to consider banning the watering of decorative grass in businesses and institutions. His administration estimates the executive order could save hundreds of thousands of acre-feet of water.

“We are not asking communities to dry up their parks or recreation areas or let their trees die,” said Wade Crowfoot, California Secretary of Natural Resources. “But we’re suggesting non-functional turf, in other words, the only other time it’s stepped on is to mow.”

Another part of the governor’s order urges regulators to require city water supplies to step up a level in their water-saving efforts to move to Stage Two.

Following the state’s latest drought, California established levels and plans tailored to each local water agency to prepare for water shortages. For example, Tier Two for many communities includes reducing the number of days residents can use water outdoors.

“A single conservation goal across the state doesn’t make sense because some communities have done absolutely everything they can,” said Jared Blumenfeld of the California Environmental Protection Agency.

Every county in California remains under a drought-related emergency declaration. State officials said they were trying to conserve water before the drought escalated.