Adel Hagekhalil, general manager of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, issues the following statement on Gov. Gavin Newsom’s Executive Order today that expands the statewide drought declaration to include all of California:
“As California faces some of the driest conditions we’ve ever seen, we need a united, statewide response. All of our communities across the state must do what we can to conserve our limited water resources.
“Southern Californians have done a great job becoming more water efficient in recent years, and Metropolitan has worked alongside them to adjust our operations and increase our calls for conservation to ensure the region has water to get through this drought. But given the increasing severity of conditions, we all need to step up and immediately cut back our water use even more.
“That is why Metropolitan’s Board of Directors in November will consider whether to call upon our member agencies to implement mandatory conservation in their communities, as outlined in their water shortage contingency plans. These plans, which are specific to the needs of each community, will help promote the water savings needed to ensure that the entire state has the water it needs, should these historically dry conditions continue for another year. In addition, Metropolitan is taking steps in the coming months to expand our conservation programs, including offering new rebates to promote water savings in homes and businesses, so we continue to be your partners in saving water. And looking ahead, we are ensuring long-term reliability through our One Water approach, including increased investments in local water supplies such as reuse and recycling.”
The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is a state-established cooperative that, along with its 26 cities and retail suppliers, provide water for 19 million people in six counties. The district imports water from the Colorado River and Northern California to supplement local supplies, and helps its members to develop increased water conservation, recycling, storage and other resource-management programs.