Water waste

Dear Editor: It is patently obvious that this winter is a dud of a rainmaker, and we are still in the throes of a major drought.

In walking about my neighborhood, I still occasionally see people washing down their driveways with drinking water. A few people are actually putting in lush green lawns. It is still common to see sprinkler systems spraying copious amounts of water on sidewalks and driveways.

Where does Downey’s water come from? It draws water from city-owned wells from the underground aquifer. The aquifer is primarily recharged through the “spreading grounds” in the city of Pico Rivera just north of Downey. In wet years, much water can be obtained from the San Gabriel River system as it issues from San Gabriel Canyon, and then flows south toward Pico Rivera through the Santa Fe and Whittier Narrows dams. In dry years, expensive supplemental water must be purchased from the Metropolitan Water District.

Another dry year, and we are going to be in dire straits.

At what point does the Downey City Council become concerned? The time is now for the city to start clamping down on people wasting water. The city will probably have to go to a tiered water bill, with people forced to pay more if they exceed a certain limit.

Do I want to pay more? Of course not, but it is the only way to rein in profligate water users.

Jack Russell




Published: March 19, 2015 - Volume 13 - Issue 49