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Balancing Compliance Costs of Additional Water Conservation Regulation

September 7, 2023

The Southern California Water Coalition sent the following letter to the Los Angeles Times regarding its September 7, 2023 article titled “Sweeping California Water Conservation Rules Could Force Big Cuts in Some Areas.”

Dear Los Angeles Times Editors,

Climate change’s devastating impact on California’s water management demands attention. Prioritizing cost-effective response strategies is essential.

A successful approach has been enhancing urban water efficiency in Southern California, resulting in as much as a 40% drop in per capita water consumption over the past decades. This achievement is commendable.

However, further progress comes with higher costs. The State Water Resources Control Board proposes regulations that could burden households with $50-100 monthly costs, making efficiency measures as expensive as ocean water desalination.

While water efficiency remains crucial for climate adaptation, affordability for our state’s communities – especially our state’s most vulnerable populations – is paramount. The proposed regulations should be guided by their ability to address the growing affordability gap that affects millions of Californians. Today, these regulations fail to strike a balance between compliance costs and alternative methods that can provide the same water volume more economically and swiftly.

Addressing climate-driven water challenges is imperative, but we must ensure that our strategies are both effective and affordable for the well-being of our beloved California communities.

Charles Wilson
Executive Director and CEO
Southern California Water Coalition

Link to original Los Angeles Times story is HERE.

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