Water Use and Efficiency Act
In-ground sprinkler systems often waste large amounts of water. Homeowners often can not control the timing of watering and waste water by watering their lawn during rainstorms. Even when watering is needed, the location of the jets lets water intended for the lawn run off onto sidewalks, driveways and roads.
After three years of drafting, advocacy, negotiations and compromise, the Coalition’s Water Use and Efficiency Act (hereafter “Act”) became law (without Governor Carcieri’s signature) on 12 November 2009. The purposes of the Act are to manage demand for potable water, reinvest in water supply infrastructure and preserve the health and ecological functioning of the state’s water resources. To fulfill these purposes:
The RI Water Resources Board (WRB) is required to issue regulations by no later than July 31, 2010 that will set targets to reduce demand for water and that will define methods for achieving these targets. Major water suppliers are required to take effective action to reduce the waste of water, and are encouraged to consider conservation pricing. Inefficient landscape irrigation is specifically identified for attention.
Major water suppliers are required to maintain reserve funds adequate for infrastructure maintenance and to stabilize revenue losses from demand management programs.
Estimates of water availability made by the WRB and the RI Department of Environmental Management (DEM) will be incorporated in the State Guide Plan and in local comprehensive plans, and used in the review of major land developments and subdivision proposals.
Documents and links of interest:
- Alliance for Water Efficiency
- EPA Water Sense Program
- The American Society of Civil Engineers Regulated Riparian Model Water Code