Recent rainfall and the prospect of more is cause for celebration. But we have a long way to go to refill depleted reservoirs. Our drought outlook greatly depends on how much rain and snow we receive in the next few months, and weather models indicate things could go either way.
Winter storms deliver the snow and rain we desperately need. But they also trigger surges in wastewater. EBMUD manages and treats these flows to protect public health and the environment, in particular San Francisco Bay.
EBMUD is on a mission to provide safe, reliable and affordable water for every customer. Yet, we know that living in the Bay Area is expensive and paying for utility bills can further stress families facing hardship.
Drought affects our services in more ways than just the water supply. Dry periods increase the threat of fire in our watersheds surrounding and protecting our reservoirs. Monterey pine trees on our watershed lands in the East Bay and the Sierra foothills are dying, leading EBMUD to escalate our efforts to remove dry vegetation that can contribute to fuel load during a fire.
September and October are among the warmest months in California, and they bring the transition from one water year into the next. For planning purposes, water providers across the state monitor the natural water cycle on a 365-day calendar that begins October 1, the normal start of the wet season. After months of drought, we’re prepared to make a big move in the coming months in case the next water year is also dry.
When the sun’s out, water use goes up, up, up. But it doesn’t have to. If you’re tired of maintaining water-hungry lawns, this is the summer to let your lawn go, go, go. Now’s the time to pull back on watering to prepare for a drought-friendly garden this fall.
The pandemic has underscored the importance of EBMUD’s role in safeguarding public health with every hand wash and every flush. EBMUD, a not-for-profit public agency, supports your East Bay water and wastewater systems with a budget and rates designed to protect public health and infrastructure.