On July 8, citing the state’s severe drought conditions and declining reservoir levels, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order asking urban residents of California to reduce their water use by 15%.
On Tuesday, the first results were published. Statewide, urban residents missed the target by far, reducing water use by 1.8% in July from July 2020. There were major differences across the state, with cities and watershed districts in north coast areas like Sonoma and Mendocino counties – where drought conditions are the worst – saving the most money, and residents of many Southern California cities are saving very little or even increasing their use compared to the previous year.
Los Angeles and San Diego, for example, have increased their water consumption by 1%. In the Bay Area, customers of the San Jose Water Company reduced their consumption by 11%, San Francisco by 10%, the Municipal District of East Bay by 8% and the District of Contra Costa Water by 7%.
The full list of 376 cities and water agencies is below. They reported the water use figures to the State Water Resources Control Board. Several water providers missed the deadline, including the Marin Municipal Water District. All water agencies, by order of the governor, are required to report data monthly in the future.