Santa Barbara Water Users Save 40 Percent

March Rains Contribute to Conservation Efforts

Although Californians slipped just below Gov. Brown’s mandated 25 percent water conservation goal recently, Santa Barbarans have saved 34 percent since the Stage 3 water restrictions were called in May 2015. The state has been under mandatory conservation for urban areas since June 2015, but came in at 23.9 percent compared to the same period of water usage in 2013. Nonetheless, that represents 1.19 million acre-feet of water saved from June to February 2016 statewide, according to the State Water Resources Control Board.

Madeline Ward, the city’s water conservation coordinator, believed the ongoing upgrades to plumbing fixtures and water conservation practices that residents have adopted during previous droughts allowed Santa Barbara to save 40 percent more water in March 2016 than in March 2013. That’s a 10 percent rise over February’s 30 percent, which Ward attributed to the rains in March that enabled residents to turn off their landscape sprinklers and otherwise avoid overwatering their gardens. Currently, Santa Barbara’s main reservoirs — Lake Cachuma and Gibraltar Reservoir — sit at 14.9 percent and 18.1 percent of capacity, respectively.

Related Story

City Water Rates Set to Spike

To submit a comment on this article, email or visit our Facebook page. To submit information to a reporter, email

Be succinct, constructive, and relevant to the story. Leaving a comment means you agree to our Discussion Guidelines. We like civilized discourse. We don't like spam, lying, profanity, harassment or personal attacks.

comments powered by Disqus
event calendar sponsored by:

Santa Barbara Sees 67 Percent Increase in Valley Fever

People living in Central Coast should avoid breathing dusty air.

Making State Street Great Again

City Hall hosted a packed meeting on downtown woes.

Clear the Shelters’ on August 18

Santa Barbara joins nationwide pet adoption drive.

Coastal Commission Looks to State Lands for Hollister Ranch Options

Commissioners are exploring all avenues for public access.

Saving Mountain Dwellers from Wildfire

Will more fuel breaks on San Marcos Pass protect them?