Reduce Water Use 40% by 2030 in Utah
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Dear Governor Herbert:
We the undersigned believe water conservation is the future of Utah because it helps us be more fiscally conservative and more sustainable. We are disappointed that Utah has the highest per-person municipal water use in the U.S., yet is calling for some of the largest and most expensive new municipal water projects in the country.
Although we all want to make sure every Utahn has water in the future, the claim we are running out of water simply because our population is growing has been repeatedly disproven. In fact, the 2015 Legislative Audit on Water found that our municipal water supply is growing as irrigated farmland is paved.
Your administration, at the Division of Water Resources, justifies billions of dollars in new tax spending by citing the municipal water use that happened in the year 2000, at 295 gallons per person per day. This figure of 295 gallons is twice the national average and much higher than the water use of most western cities. Utah’s current water conservation goal is to reduce municipal water use just 1% per year until the year 2025 and to stop conserving water after that. We believe Utah can do better.
Lowering Utah’s municipal water use 40% by the year 2030 would reduce our use to 175 gallons per person per day. The list of Western cities already using 175 gallons is very long, including Denver, Los Angeles, San Antonio and Fort Worth. Utah water leaders claim the state has reduced water use 18% since the year 2000, meaning Utah is already about halfway to achieving this 40% goal.
We believe reducing Utah’s municipal water use by 40% is a fiscally conservative action that will save Utahns from billions of dollars in unnecessary taxpayer spending and protect urban residents from large increases in water rates.
We hereby call upon you to adopt 40% by 2030 as the new official statewide municipal water conservation goal for Utah.
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