More cities and towns across the state are taking steps to reduce water use in reaction to some of Iowa’s driest, hottest conditions in decades. Residents of Iowa’s largest city and its suburbs are being asked to quit watering their lawns and take shorter showers.
Des Moines Water Works C.E.O. Randy Beavers it’s the first time since the 1970s that such water conservation measures have been put in place. “We had a peak water use day on Monday of a little over 95 million gallons and at the same time, we saw water tank levels in our system get down lower than what we’re comfortable with,” Beavers said. During a normal day, Des Moines Water Works supplies around 60 million gallons of water.
The goal of the “stage one conservation plan” in Des Moines is to reduce water use by 10% while the drought persists. “It’s still voluntary at this stage one level, but we’re asking folks to reduce the amount of water they use on their lawns and to really consider shutting off those lawn irrigation systems and let their lawns go dormant,” Beavers said.
That move alone could save Des Moines Water Works 20 to 30 million gallons of water per day, according to Beavers.