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Homeowners Save 1 Billion Gallons Of Water

Originally Published on the ECOreport

California may be in the midst of the worst drought on record, but its people are not helpless. One of the means that homeowners have at their disposal are water-efficiency projects financed through the Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) programs. Once its current projects are complete, the state’s largest PACE program (HERO PACE) will help homeowners save 1 billion gallons of water.


PACE Water Conservation Programs Work

“By our calculations, If only one percent of everyone in the current HERO communities participated, 2.5 billion gallons of water would be saved in one year alone. And if every resident of California participated, the water savings would be a whopping 525 billion gallons annually. That would be more than twice the volume of Lake Tahoe saved every year,” said a company spokesman.

“We’ve only just begun. According to the U.S. Geological Survey’s most recent data California uses 38 billion gallons of water each day. Crossing the billion-gallon mark statewide highlights the significant potential for water conservation within homes across the State,” said Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, who pushed for adoption of Los Angeles County’s PACE program.

“The HERO Program shows how private companies can help local governments solve some of our state’s largest challenges, such as the extended drought,” said Brian Tisdale, Mayor Pro Tem of Lake Elsinore and Chair of the Western Riverside Council of Governments, which initiated the HERO Program in California in 2011.


Effective Measures

One of the most effective measures a homeowner can take is to replace his lawns with artificial turf or native landscaping. In some communities, up to 2/3 of the residential water use is watering lawns and gardens.

PACE loans can also be used to install high-efficiency toilets, faucets and showerheads; gray water systems, rain catchment systems or drip irrigation systems.



Programs are financed through homeowners’ property taxes in participating communities. Companies like Renovate America, Renew Financial and Ygrene Energy Fund provide 100% of the upfront financing. The cost is added onto the homeowners tax assessment and paid back over time.

HERO is currently the largest PACE program operating in California. It has provided more than $824 million in financing for energy projects in 35,000 homes. This program is available to 77% of California’s households, in 336 communities spread over 35 counties.

Photo Credit: All photos courtesy Renovate America, which operates the HERO PACE program. 

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Written By

is the President of Cortes Community Radio , CKTZ 89.5 FM, where he has hosted a half hour program since 2014, and editor of the Cortes Currents (formerly the ECOreport), a website dedicated to exploring how our lifestyle choices and technologies affect the West Coast of British Columbia. He writes for both writes for both Clean Technica and PlanetSave on Important Media. He is a research junkie who has written over 2,000 articles since he was first published in 1982. Roy lives on Cortes Island, BC, Canada.


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