Pray for rain.
We need more responsible water use. We all could do more.
I have tried. We only have 1/3 of the amount of lawn as we did when we built our house in 1990. I’ve got lots of gravel and bark covering the ground now. Our garden and planting beds are watered using a drip system. The state issued guides of limiting lawn watering to 40 minutes per week. I am complying and it isn’t too tough to comply to. The other thing I am constantly doing is retooling the sprinkling system to maximize the water use.
But I’m sure I could do more. I’m considering putting a bucket in the shower to catch the water that runs while it warms up, and then use it later to water outside plants.
If I had the money, I’d xeriscape my yard in a heartbeat. That’s a really damn expensive process though, and with three kids still in the house, not a particularly feasible one.
I’m trying to be better about water use in general like watering less (half my lawn looks all but dead right now), but could certainly always do more.
Around 1300 AD the drought was so severe people left what is now the Southwest US. I suppose if Lakes Mead & Powell dry up it may happen again.
Look into plumbing an insta-hot. Not sure the name, but we have one on our hot water, so waiting. No wasted water.
We built out home in Bend in 2013. Zero grass except for native bunch grasses that are not otherwise watered. All of the plants and trees we have planted are on drip, some micro-sprayers on the same system.
Another thing that can be done is install a rainwater catchment system, stored in tanks that can we used for watering later. I’m toying with building on off a part of my roof that covers the largest drainage.
Short or xeriscaping, consider you may want to talk to the folks at the Conservation Water Gardens in So. Jordan. They have some good ideas on limiting grass to islands that aren’t as drastic as full xeriscape. If I were putting in a new yard I’d use their ideas from the get-go.
Like Newbomb, we switched all our flower and vegetable gardens to drip systems several years back. Really like it. We started with that porous tubing drip system, but it’s a problem with hard water here. We’ve since switched to the stuff with little one way valves every foot. That works great. Also, we’re turning all sprinkler systems we have (home and two rentals) to match the Div. of Water Resources guidelines of two 20 minutes/wk.
Hell, a good chunk of Americans won’t listen to any scientists today, regarding many topics.
Mel Brooks predicted this in 1974.
another concern is the population explosion in Utah and around the West. I think Utah has sufficient water (even in a severe drought for 3 million people), but when our population hits 5+ million (which its expected to do in another 20 years) that’s concerning.
I don’t ever recall my lawn yellowing this early in the Summer before. Typically it at least July before I start to see some yellowing. I’ve also reduced the size of my lawn significantly, mostly because its too expensive to water.
I recall reading an article about a homeowner in Murray who had a large beautiful green lawn with lots of flowers who was spending over $1,000 a month for water. Yikes!
I’m always amazed to see how many of the homes in my neighborhoods are watering their giant lawns at 5 in the afternoon when it’s 90-100 degrees outside.
After John Wesley Powell’s trips down the Green & Colorado Rivers and exploring the desert southwest, he said the west is too arid to support large populations.
He was correct.
Some very interesting data on how water is actually used in Utah. It’s a bit older…I’d love to see an updated breakdown.
I honestly had no idea domestic was such a small percentage of overall usage.
The biggest challenge is the underutilization of irrigation (secondary) water for outdoor watering in our urban environment. There is a vast amount of acre-feet of secondary water that it’s beneficial use (farm irrigation) went away due to development. Converting that use to metered Secondary would give it a new use.
Bringing the Bear River to SL County, et. al., to feed drinking water needs when drinking water is being used for outdoor irrigation is expensive and a wrong-thinking move. The system of thought regarding water needs a serious update.
I’m just waiting for modern science to invent something to replace water.
Reviving this thread because of a very interesting article with amazing photography and videography from the Washington Post about the Colorado River and its shrinkage.