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Fiona Sanchez, Conservation Manager, IRWD PowerPoint Presentation
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Fiona Sanchez, Conservation Manager, IRWD

Fiona Sanchez, Conservation Manager, IRWD

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Fiona Sanchez, Conservation Manager, IRWD

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  1. Fiona Sanchez, Conservation Manager, IRWD Water Budgets and Tiered Rates:Costs, Savings and Your Bottom Line

  2. Today’s Presentation • IRWD Introduction • Water Budgets • Tiered Rates • How they Impact Landscape Costs and Savings

  3. Service Area • Service area of 179 square miles is over 20% of Orange County • Serve All or Portions of: • City of Irvine • City of Lake Forest • City of Tustin • City of Newport Beach • City of Costa Mesa • City of Orange • Unincorporated Orange County

  4. Water Use Efficiency and Conservation • Allocation Based Rate Structure(aka Water Budgets and Tiered Rates) • New Technology – Weather Based Irrigation Controllers • Landscape Irrigation Management Programs • Residential Programs • Commercial, Industrial, and Institutional Programs

  5. Water Budgets

  6. What Is a Water Budget? • A budget is generally a list of all planned expenses and revenues. It is a plan for saving and spending. • A water budget is a plan for managing water use and saving. • Water is typically one of the major costs of landscape maintenance. • Tracks planned water use versus actual water use. • A water budget helps manage the costs and improves site maintenance and efficiency.

  7. Using a Water Budget • Calculate how much water the site actually needs • Need site acreage • Use formula to estimate water requirement • Track how much water was used compared with the water budget

  8. Water Budgets and Water Rates • Water costs are increasing • Water supplies are constrained • More water agencies adopting water–budget based conservation rate structures: • Tiered-rates • Restrictions on over-use • Allocation-based/budget-based tiered rates

  9. Allocation-Based Tiered Rates

  10. Allocation-Based Conservation Rate Structure Basic Premise: • Allocates water to customers based upon site specific uses, landscaping needs • Allocations based on research; not arbitrary • Adjusted for climate • Fair and equitable • Encourages use patterns within allocationthrough a significantly tiered commodity pricing system • Economic incentives to reward efficient use • Disincentives for wasteful use

  11. Landscape Allocations • Based upon landscaped area and evapotranspiration (ET) • As of July 1, 2009 • Warm season turf Kc = 0.6 • Irrigation system efficiency 71% • Assumes wall-to-wall turf; more water is allocated than needed

  12. Outdoor Allocation Comparison

  13. ET Data Sources Foothill Central Coastal • CIMIS • IRWD has three climate zones and maintains its own weather stations • Spatial ET (Free DWR Data) • 2 square km resolution • cortega@einfosys.org for info/data access

  14. Rate Structure - Landscape TIER BREAK POINT RATE* (% of Allocation) Low Volume 0 - 40% $0.91 Base 41-100% Base rate $1.21 Inefficient 101-110% 2x base $2.50 Excessive 111-120% 4x base $4.32 Wasteful 120+% 8x base $9.48 100% of water needed *Potable rate effective 7/1/10 - discount for recycled water

  15. Sample Landscape Water Billing - Overuse 8/28/09 9/28/09 6904 7085 181CCF USAGE - LOW VOLUME 22 0.91 $ 20.02 USAGE - CONSERVATION BASE RATE 32 1.07 $ 34.24 USAGE - INEFFICIENT 5 2.14 $ 10.70 USAGE - EXCESSIVE 6 4.28 $ 25.68 USAGE - WASTEFUL 116 8.56 $ 992.96 WATER SERVICE CHARGE $49.75 YOUR ALLOCATION FOR THIS BILL 54 CCF BILL CALCULATION BASED ON 0.32 acres TO AVOID LATE CHARGE PAY BEFORE 10/21/09 $1042.71 Over allocation use pays penalty rates, discourages overuse Commodity Within Allocation $ 54.26 20%Commodity Above Allocation $1029.34 80%

  16. IRWD’s Rate Structure Reduces Water Use • Since Rates Adopted in 1991: • Average Water Use Dropped from 4.4 AF/ac/yr. To 1.9 AF/ac/yr. • Stabilization of Dry Weather Runoff • Changes in Plant Material Selection - more “California Friendly” landscaping • From 1992 to 2000: • Irrigated Area Doubled • Landscape Water Use Only Increased by 3%

  17. Conservation Program and Rate Structure Results IRWD Residential and Landscape Water Usage

  18. What’s the Bottom Line?

  19. Water Budgets, Tiered Rates and the Bottom Line Signs of Over-Watering • HIGH WATER BILLS!!! – don’t pay to waste water • Review utility bills carefully and look for red flags • Sudden increase in usage or cost • Tiered rates red-flag high use • Track use and monitor patterns • Peak in summer • Low in winter

  20. Water Use Tracking – Identify Trends/Problems IRWD site visit IRWD tiered rates adopted

  21. Water Budgets, Tiered Rates and the Bottom Line Hidden Costs

  22. Water Budgets, Tiered Rates and the Bottom Line Hidden Costs

  23. Water Budgets, Tiered Rates and the Bottom Line Manage Water Use and Control Costs • Monitor Utility Bills • Contract Specs • Site Walk-Throughs • Resources • Meter tracking sheets • Utility-sponsored programs • Water-budget based programs

  24. Landscape Water Budget Report http://www.aquaficientco.com/IRWD-lb/

  25. Landscape Water Budget Report

  26. Water Budgets, Tiered Rates and the Bottom Line Staying Within Budget • Consider Irrigation Efficiency Improvements • Controllers • System Upgrades • Improve efficiency and reduce water waste = Long-term Savings

  27. Summary • Water costs are increasing • Water budgets, allocations and tiered rates can help you save • Check and track how much water you are using and patterns of use • Use the info to identify potential problems • Staying within budget and controlling costs: • Consider site improvements/modifications to minimize hard to irrigate areas and improve efficiency • Consider installing water efficient irrigation technologies • Check with local utility for any rebates or assistance

  28. Questions? Fiona Sanchez Conservation Manager, IRWD (949) 453-5325 sanchezf@irwd.com www.alwayswatersmart.com