July is traditionally the month of peak demand for outdoor water use and the reason why it was chosen as Smart Irrigation Month by the Irrigation Association in 2005. The month celebrates the social, economic and environmental benefits of efficient irrigation.
The domestic water supply for the Coachella Valley is largely groundwater. In Indio alone, IWA pumps 16-21 million gallons of groundwater every day of the year and about 6 billion gallons annually from 20 wells that are at least 1,000 feet deep. It takes a lot of electricity to pump high quality drinking water from the deep aquifer and pumping has to be done optimally to secure future supply and to avoid land subsidence and degradation of water quality.
That’s why water conservation remains important. A household’s outdoor water use can be as high as 80 percent of entire use. In addition, some experts estimate that as much as 50 percent of water used for irrigation is wasted due to inefficient irrigation methods and systems, evaporation, wind, or runoff. Experts estimate that you could save 20 percent of your irrigation water use just by having your irrigation system perform better. The cost is minimal when you apply for IWA’s Irrigation Upgrade Rebate @ www.indiowater.org/rebates.
This is a good time for everyone to find ways to save money, reduce their landscape water needs, nurture their landscape properly, and protect our community’s water supply. You can start by having an efficient irrigation system, watering wisely – before sunrise and after sunset to reduce water loss and on non-windy days – and planting low water use landscapes. IWA can assist you in this endeavor by reimbursing you for portions of your cost to upgrade your irrigation system or improve watering efficiency. Residential customers can receive up to $750 for irrigation upgrades such as the installation of weather-based irrigation controllers, a rain sensor, high-efficiency sprinklers, drip irrigation conversion, and pressure regulators just to mention a few; non-residential customers can receive up to $1,500.
If you are ready to go one step further and replace your turf grass with a beautiful desert-friendly landscape, IWA is here to help with a rebate of $2 per square feet of grass replaced. Residential customers can receive up to $20,000 while non-residential customers such as businesses, homeowner associations and institutions can receive up to $60,000. There is no better time to consider reducing your turf grass square footage, upgrade your irrigation, and reduce outdoor water use and landscape maintenance cost.
Be a good steward of our precious resource – water, reap long-term savings and benefits of water-use efficiency, and be drought prepared. For more tips and to take advantage of the generous incentives offered by IWA, please visit www.indiowater.org/conservation and follow us on Facebook.