DeKalb urges residents to conserve water during drought
FILE - This May 1, 2014, file photo shows irrigation water runs along a dried-up ditch between rice farms in Richvale, Calif. In Santa Cruz, Calif., dozens of residents who violated their strict water rations take a seat at Water School, hoping to get hundreds of thousands of dollars in distressing penalties waived. California is in the third year of the state's worst drought in recent history. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)

September 16, 20163min670
California Drought Water School
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DeKalb County is urging residents to conserve water as many metro area areas are in a Level 1 drought and facing unusually dry conditions this year.

Persistent dry conditions have prompted the Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) to declare a Level 1 Drought Response in 53 counties, including DeKalb.

“We are asking DeKalb County residents and business to proactively address these drought conditions by doing everything they can to conserve water,” said DeKalb Interim CEO Lee May.

The DeKalb Department of Watershed Management urges residents to follow these watering restrictions set forth by the Georgia EPD, which states that outdoor watering should be limited to the hours between 4 p.m. and 10 a.m. to avoid the hottest part of the day when more evaporation occurs. There are several exceptions, such as new plantings, listed at http://epd.georgia.gov/water-conservation.

In addition, DeKalb County is encouraging residents to conduct a modified outdoor watering according to the odd/even schedule:

Odd-numbered addresses to irrigate on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays.

Even-numbered and unnumbered addresses to irrigate on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays.

“DeKalb County supports the efforts of the Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District and Georgia Environmental Protection Division in conserving our precious resource of water,” stated Department of Watershed Director Scott Towler.

Additionally, DeKalb County offers these tips to residents for saving water:

  • Use a rain gauge to determine how much rain has occurred over the week before watering outdoor plants. Most outdoor plants need an inch of water per week.
  • Water lawns and plants in several short sessions instead of one long session. This reduces runoff and allows water to infiltrate into soil and plant roots.
  • Water lawns only when needed. If the blades of grass don’t bounce back after walking across the lawn, it is time to water. (More plants die from over watering than under watering.)Water lawns and plants in the early morning and late evening.
  • Check for water leaks inside and outside and repair when found.
  • Shorten showers and turn off water when shaving or brushing teeth.
  • Fill dishwashers and washing machines to ensure there is a full load every time.
  • Sweep hard surfaces such as streets, sidewalks and driveways instead of washing.

Throughout the duration of the Level 1 Drought Response, DeKalb will be sending out regular updates on the status of the drought and water conservation information via mainstream and social media channels.

For more information on the latest drought status, go to www.northgeorgiawater.org and click on “Latest Water Stats.”

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