Bay Area drought

Continued Calls for Water Conservation as Drought Persists

Santa Clara Valley Water has called on all residents, businesses and farms to cut water use by 15%

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The rainy season started off with a good soaking, but experts warn we're still a long way from being out of the drought.

"We are in a drought," Santa Clara Valley Water board member John Varela said.

The levels at South Bay reservoirs remain at historic lows, averaging only 11% of capacity. State reservoirs aren't doing much better.

"We import much of our water from the Sierra, through the reservoirs in the northern part of the state, and they’re all low," Varela said. "No snowpack or minimal amount of snowpack."

With just over a month until winter arrives, Valley Water is again pleading for conservation – an alert we normally see in late spring.

Leaders are also showcasing a home in Morgan Hill as an example of how homeowners can help.

"They’ve taken out their high-water-using lawn and replaced it with low-water-using plants," water conservation specialist Ashley Shannon said.

The Wells family got a $3,000 rebate from Valley Water for their lawn transformation.

"Our water bill did go down," homeowner Bob Wells said. "So, I was looking for water savings. It's good to use less water. Plus, the front lawn is not very useful at all."

Valley Water has called on all residents, businesses and farms to cut water use by 15%.

Experts warn another dry winter might mean some residential wells could go dry, forcing even more drastic measures.

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