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Climate and Environment

Newsom Asks For Stricter Water Conservation Measures Throughout California

Freeway pilons rise up from the water of a lake in  park.
The 5 freeway cuts through Hollenbeck Park in Boyle Heights.
(Robert Garcia
/
The City Project/via Flickr)
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Southern California is finally getting some much-needed rain, but it's likely just a drop in the bucket as the state continues to face severe drought conditions.

In light of the ongoing drought, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order today that takes measures to limit water usage by businesses and residents throughout the state.

The order asks California’s State Water Resources Control Board to consider a ban on the watering of so-called decorative grass next to large industrial or commercial buildings, which officials estimate will result in water savings that could accommodate hundreds of thousands of households per year.

The ban would not apply to residential lawns, or grass at parks and sports fields.

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Newsom is also calling on local agencies to implement plans that prepare communities for a water shortage level of up to 20%, such as reducing the number of days that residents can water plants outside.

“While we have made historic investments to protect our communities, economy and ecosystems from the worsening drought across the West, it is clear we need to do more,” he said in a statement. “Amid climate-driven extremes in weather, we must all continue to do our part and make water conservation a way of life.”

Last summer, Newsom called on Californians to voluntarily cut their water use by 15%.

Residents did not reach that goal.

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