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Valley Water Board Chair Tony Estremera statement on upcoming weekend storms and continued drought

October 21, 2021
An image of Lexington Reservoir in summer 2021

As this weekend’s storms approach, my fellow Board Members and I would like to remind Santa Clara County that we will continue to be in a drought emergency once the storm passes. While some parts of Santa Clara County may see significant rainfall totals, it is not nearly enough to end the drought.

We must continue to conserve water whenever possible.

We’re all looking forward to receiving the much-needed rain. However, for the drought to end, our region would need several more storms to fill our local reservoirs and produce enough snowpack in the Sierra Nevada to fill state and federal reservoirs. These reservoirs, along with ongoing snowmelt and runoff through the summer, provide Santa Clara County with about half of our yearly water supply.

With this early-season rain, we’d like to remind residents to turn off their sprinklers for the rest of the week. And as we approach the winter months, please dial back your watering schedule as plants don’t need as much water in cooler weather.

We’d like to thank the Santa Clara community for continuing to reduce their water use over the course of the last several months. While we’ve made great progress in this effort, we still have work to do.

Conservation is just one tool we are using to contend with drought. Valley Water is leading the way out of drought through technology. One solution we must take advantage of is expanding our use of purified water, a drought-resilient and locally controlled source.

Although we are experiencing a drought emergency, we must be prepared for the potential of flooding this winter. As we continue into the wet season, please be aware if your home or business is in a Special Flood Hazard Area. We advise you to take the proper precautions for future storms.


For conservation tips, tools, and rebates visit

To find out if your home or business is in a Special Flood Hazard Area visit

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 285 acres of groundwater recharge ponds and more than 294 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.