County launches water conservation effort
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Responding to historically dry weather conditions and low reservoir water storage levels, a coalition of local water utilities on Jan. 8 kicked off a new and unusual wintertime public outreach effort asking its communities to turn the water off to help save water. 

The Sonoma-Marin Saving Water Partnership (Partnership) will be implementing a regional multi-media effort throughout the North Bay region with a simple message: The drought is on; turn the water off. The Partnership includes the Sonoma County Water Agency and nine water utilities including the cities of Cotati, Rohnert Park, Petaluma, Santa Rosa, Sonoma, Windsor, and the North Marin, Valley of the Moon, and Marin Municipal Water Districts.

The campaign will include outdoor water conservation tips that will rotate in local and regional publications, radio stations and online media. Each advertisement spotlights a creative or humorous method for saving water. View the advertisements on www.wateroff.org.

The new advertisements augment the Partnership’s ongoing year-round water conservation program, which has included featuring local residents and businesses doing their part to save water by participating in local rebate programs.

“The Sonoma-Marin Saving Water Partnership’s goal is to increase awareness of the drought and introduce some fun and creative ways to save water,” said Jake Mackenzie, Rohnert Park City Councilman and Chairman of the Water Advisory Committee. Last year was one of the driest years Sonoma County has seen in 120 years. 

No significant rainfall is forecasted through mid-January, leaving local water supply reservoirs at record lows, including the region’s two largest reservoirs – Lake Mendocino (38 percent of water supply capacity) and Lake Sonoma (67 percent of water supply capacity).

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