Much of California has a semi-arid climate and a very limited natural water supply, while a growing population exerts ever-increasing demands on that water. Finding ways to conserve water is essential to the economic and environmental health of the Bay Area, and indeed the entire state.
Water conservation works, as Los Angeles has shown. The city has grown by nearly 1 million people since 1970, but conservation has kept water use from rising along with the population. In 1998, Los Angeles' population of about 3.6 million people used the same amount of water as 2.6 million people did more than 25 years earlier. While Los Angeles can still do much more to increase efficiency, its accomplishments illustrate the potential for water conservation here in the Bay Area and throughout the state.