San Diego Nationally Recognized for Water Conservation

San Diego Earns Title of Most 'Water Wise' City in Nationwide Challenge

San Diego - As California enters its fourth year of drought, Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer announced that San Diego placed first in a contest aimed at slashing water and energy use.

The Wyland Foundation's Annual National Mayor's Challenge for Water Conservation is a nonprofit national community service campaign where leaders inspire their residents to make a series of easy-to-use online pledges to reduce water and energy usage. More than 3,900 cities took part in the contest. San Diego was named the most water wise major city in the country.

"San Diegans have always been statewide leaders in reducing their water usage and I am proud to see our efforts recognized on a national level," Mayor Faulconer said. "As we aim to meet the state's mandated water-use reduction of 16 percent, I am confident San Diegans will continue to lead by example. The easiest way to save water is to scale back on outdoor watering."

Residents who made the pledge to join the contest from April 1- 30 were entered to win a Toyota Prius v, water-saving fixtures for their homes and hundreds of other eco-friendly prizes. Last year, San Diego placed second in the challenge for major cities, just behind Dallas.

More than 42,000 people across the U.S. made pledges to save over 1.5 billion gallons of water, which is enough to fill 2,300 Olympic-sized swimming pools. Beyond their pledge to save more than 21 million gallons of water, San Diego residents agreed to reduce their use of single-use plastic water bottles by more than 62,792 bottles and eliminate 1,878 pounds of hazardous waste from entering watersheds.

The City of San Diego offers are a host of resources to help residents conserve water including:

  • Free-of-charge water surveys. A Water Conservation representative will tour your property to identify leaks and water-saving opportunities. Participants can receive free water-saving equipment, including low-flow showerheads and faucet aerators, among other things.
  • Rebates for rain barrels that catch and store rain water.
  • Rebates for removal of a grass lawn that is replaced with water-wise plant material.
  • Rebates for converting an overhead spray sprinkler system to low application rate micro-irrigation (i.e. drip, micro-spray, etc.).
  • Free mulch. City residents can get up to two cubic yards of mulch from the Miramar Greenery.

Applications for City of San Diego rebates will be accepted when the City's new budget goes into effect July 1, 2015. Mayor Faulconer has included $1.15 million for grass lawn replacement rebates in his budget proposal. For more information on those and other City programs, go to wastenowater.org.

For more information on resources outside of the City of San Diego, go to socalwatersmart.com. Rebates are currently available from the Metropolitan Water District and San Diego County residents are encouraged to apply.

CONTACT: Jen Lebron Kuhney at (619) 384-5289 or [email protected]