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Governor signs bill to improve irrigation equipment efficiency

September 16, 2016

SAN JOSE— On Tuesday, Sept. 13, Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 1928 into law. The bill, authored by Assemblymember Nora Campos and sponsored by Santa Clara Valley Water District, will ensure efficiency standards and labeling requirements for landscape irrigation equipment are established by Jan. 1, 2019 to help consumers continue to conserve water.

Chair Barbara Keegan stated, “The Santa Clara Valley Water District is proud to have sponsored legislation that will provide long-term permanent solutions to protecting not only Silicon Valley’s water supply, but the entire state of California. Thank you to the governor, Assemblymember Campos, and the state Legislature for recognizing how important it is to establish irrigation equipment standards for California.”

Assemblymember Campos said “The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the California Energy Commission (CEC) have created and approved strict water efficiency standards for indoor water fixtures and appliances. However, there has been no standard or labeling requirements for landscape irrigation equipment, despite the fact that landscaper irrigation comprises about half of residential water use.”

As a state, we’ve become more water conscious and have made huge strides with indoor conservation efforts. However, 50 percent of residential water use takes place outdoors; having water efficient gardens and landscapes will translate into significant water savings. AB 1928 will help California take the next and long overdue steps in recommitting ourselves to improving outdoor water efficiency.

According to the State Assembly’s analysis of the bill, technology in landscape irrigation has advanced in recent years with numerous new efficient irrigation controls and moisture sensing devices coming to the market. Consumers appear to be responding to these conditions as it has been reported that one of the largest areas of sales growth at home improvement stores has been efficient landscape irrigation equipment.

Valley Water manages an integrated water resources system that includes the supply of clean, safe water, flood protection and stewardship of streams on behalf of Santa Clara County's 2 million residents. The district effectively manages 10 dams and surface water reservoirs, three water treatment plants, an advanced recycled water purification center, a state-of-the-art water quality laboratory, nearly 400 acres of groundwater recharge ponds and more than 275 miles of streams. We provide wholesale water and groundwater management services to local municipalities and private water retailers who deliver drinking water directly to homes and businesses in Santa Clara County.