North Bay city leads Bay Area and California for water conservation during historic drought

ByCornell Barnard via KGO logo
Tuesday, August 30, 2022
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Petaluma is ranked number one in the Bay Area and among the top 10 cities in California when it comes to water conservation.

PETALUMA, Calif. (KGO) -- A North Bay community is leading the way when it comes to conserving water during our ongoing historic drought.

"I'm super proud of Petaluma," said Natasha Juliana.

Juliana knows her city has been crushing it when it comes to saving water.

"I didn't know how much water you can get out of your sink and shower," she said.

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Natasha works for Cool Petaluma, a grass roots nonprofit, helping to mobilize people to take climate action and save water. Through its website, hundreds of neighbors are now participating in the challenge to conserve.

"Because when you take individual actions, it feels like a drop in the bucket. But when you do it publicly together you can see the needle really move," said Juliana.

Petaluma environmental analyst Chelsea Thompson says community partnerships have helped surpass water conservation goals considerably. In June 2022, residents reduced water use by 34% and in July, even better- down 35%, making Petaluma number one across the Bay Area and about number six statewide when it comes to conservation.

"We have a lot of grassroots efforts to make water conservation a lifestyle not just during a drought," said Thompson.

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The city already has strict watering restrictions and planting regulations and is making free water saving tools available to residents.

Trathen Heckman's climate action nonprofit, Daily Acts has partnered with the city creating drought tolerant community gardens with rainwater harvesting tanks. The group organizes community workshops to inspire and empower neighbors.

"We're all on the same page, we need to save water and address the climate crisis to make things equitable for people," said Heckman.

The city hopes conservation efforts will continue in the future but for now a big thank you.

"Yes thank you, the efforts of the community have been outstanding," Thompson added.

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