Due to severely dry conditions, the Georgia Environmental Protection Division has declared a level 1 drought response in 53 counties, including Douglas. This declaration requires water providers to educate the public about drought conditions and water conservation.
The declaration follows a wet winter, but a dry spring and summer. Rainfall may return to normal during the fall and winter months, but we need to take reasonable measures to be responsible stewards of water and to be prepared for the possibility this is a long-term drought.
What does this mean for me, a WSA customer? A level 1 drought response means we are asking all of our customers to use Douglas County’s water resources wisely! Be conscientious about water use around your home or business and make sure you are not wasting this valuable resource.
Can I still use water outdoors for things like gardening and washing my car? Absolutely! The current outdoor watering restrictions have not changed with the level 1 drought response. You are still permitted to water your lawn each day of the week between 4:00 p.m. and 10:00 a.m., as well as use water for other outdoor activities. You can review all of the current outdoor watering restrictions here.
What can I do to help? There are plenty of easy things you can do to make sure you are using water resources responsibly.
- Start by taking a household water assessment to make sure your home is as water-efficient as it can be.
- Check out some simple and quick conservation tips to help reduce your water use.
- Review the restrictions on outdoor watering.
- Report any leaks you may come across at your home or in your community to email@example.com or by calling (770)949-7617.
What are some measures WSA has taken to conserve and protect water in Douglas County? Over the past decade, we have implemented several large scale projects and programs to drive conservation and protect the natural resources we use every day. Some examples of these significant measures include:
- Google/WSA Partnership: Developed a re-use facility that uses non-potable water to cool the servers at Google’s Douglasville facility. Had we not collaborated to develop this plan, Google would have needed to take a large amount of treated drinking water from WSA’s system every day. WSA and Google have received national recognition for this initiative.
- Flow Augmentation Line: We are required each day to release a set amount of water from our dam into the Chattahoochee River. The flow augmentation line takes clean, treated wastewater directly from our South Central Plant and deposits it into the river, lessening the amount we must release from our Dog River dam, which in return, keeps the dam fuller with water that can be used for our customers.
- Toilet Rebate Program: Administered by WSA in 2010-2011, this program rebated customers for replacing old toilets with new low flow models in their homes and businesses.
- Reservoir Expansion and Strategic Future Planning: We know that the population of Douglas County and thus, the demands on our system, will only continue to increase as time goes on. WSA has made sure we are forward and future thinking when it comes to water resources.
- Well informed customer base, community and governmental leaders, and engaged Board of Directors: Our involvement with the local community is widespread and promotes the importance of water, conservation, and good stewardship. Our community members are our best allies!
Where can I keep track of drought conditions? The U.S. Drought Monitor is a great tool to keep up with drought conditions around the state. You can view the monitor here. The Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District also provides valuable information about water conservation and usage in metro Atlanta on their website, NorthGeorgiaWater.org.