Are We Running Dry?

June 15, 2009 at 7:47 pm 1 comment

j0433143Water is essential to California’s quality of life. Our economy depends on it, our families and communities cannot thrive without it, and it is an integral part of the state’s physical beauty and diverse ecology. Unfortunately, California’s water system is in crisis; for the first time in the state’s history, the water supply and delivery system may not be able to meet our growing needs. At the same time, criticial environmental resources are in peril. From aging infrastructure to population growth and climate change, we face a complex set of problems that threaten the future of California’s population, economy, and environment.

The Torrance Public Library, in cooperation with the Torrance Library Commission, the Torrance Water Commission, the Torrance Environmental Quality and Energy Conservation Commission, and the Metropolitan Water District (MWD) of Southern California, will be screening the film, “The American Southwest: Are We Running Dry?” on Saturday, June 27, 2009 at 2:00 p.m. in the Katy Geissert Civic Center Library Meeting Room. The film will be followed by speaker Charles Gale, Jr., Principal Government and Regional Affairs Representative (MWD) who will be discussing ways Californians can ensure a continued supply of this precious resource.

A few *facts about water and its use:
—99% of the earth’s water is tied up in oceans, in water that is too saline to drink or to use on crops or in gardens
—The average American uses between 80 and 100 gallons of water per day
—The country as a whole uses about 323 billion gallons per day
—Landscaping accounts for about half the water Californians use at home, showers account for another 18%, while toilets use about 20%
—About 75% of California’s available water occurs north of Sacramento, while about 80% of the demand occurs in the southern two-thirds of the state
—Groundwater provides about 40% of the state’s water supply; in dry years, that percentage can go as high as 60%

*sources: Association of California Water Agencies
Green Your Home by Jeanne Roberts

According to an article found on the website LiveScience, desalination is not economically viable at this point in time. Several days ago, National Public Radio reported on using gray water, “Recycling ‘Gray Water’ Cheaply, Safely” to help conserve and recycle. However, until these and other methodologies to increase our water supply become safe and readily available, it would be wise for all of us to become more aware of how we use and abuse water and how we can best conserve this essential resource.

Here are a few websites to help you familiarize yourself with water issues and water conservation:
Water Education Foundation A Briefing on California Water Issues
California Urban Water Conservation Council
Water – Use It Wisely
Save Our Water
Calculate Your Water Footprint

Please join us for what should be a very interesting and useful program!

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