Water Conservation

QWEL water conservation
QWEL 2007 water audit head adjustment

The Agency’s Water Conservation Program develops and implements an array of programs designed to save water and reduce wastewater flows into its sanitation systems. These programs includ the Qualified Water-Efficient Landscaper (QWEL) Program and the High-Efficiency Fixture Direct-Install Program. The Agency is also participating in a statewide campaign called “Save Our Water.”

The Qualified Water-Efficient Landscaper Program (QWEL) targets landscape water use by engaging landscape professionals to improve water efficiency through better landscape design, maintenance, and operation. Landscape water use is one of the largest sources of urban water demand and an important piece of the efficiency puzzle for SWCA. The program provides 20 hours of training on principals of proper plant selection for the local climate (xeriscaping), irrigation system programming and operation, and irrigation system components and maintenance... QWEL is one of two US EPA WaterSense Irrigation Auditor Certification Programs in the nation. The program was developed in cooperation with the California Landscape Contractors Association, Sonoma County Water Agency, City of Santa Rosa, Marin Municipal Water District and the colleges of Santa Rosa and Marin.

The High-Efficiency Fixture Direct-Install Program offers free installation of high-efficiency plumbing fixtures to commercial, residential, and multi-family customers in eligible service areas.

The program offers installations on the following fixtures:

  • Toilets: replacement of high-flush toilets (defined as 3.5 gallons per flush (gpf) or more) with low-flow toilets (defined as 1.1 gpf or less) from the Agency’s Qualifying HET Model List
  • Urinals: replacement of urinals (defined as 1.0 gpf or more) with a high-efficiency urinals (defined as 0.125 gpf or less) from the Agency’s Qualifying HEU Model List
  • Faucets & Showerheads: replacement of all high-flow faucet aerators and showerheads with high-efficiency models (defined as 1.5 gallons per minute or less).

"Save Our Water" is a statewide public outreach and education campaign that helps participating communities introduce easy-to-implement water efficiency tips to residents and businesses . Save Our Water is supported by Governor Schwarzenegger, the Department of Water Resources and the Association of California Water Agencies. The Agency will run the campaign's advertisements in its service area, including Sonoma and Marin counties.

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