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Raleigh to Look at Tougher Water Rules

Posted October 8, 2007

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— City officials may soon consider tighter water restrictions in the face of the continuing drought, Raleigh Mayor Charles Meeker said Monday.

The City Council likely will address what Meeker called "Stage 1.5" water consumption limits at its meeting next week, he said.

Meeker said he would like to see a mix of regulations that would further limit residential consumption – such as banning all outdoor lawn-watering – but would not impact businesses as much as Stage 2 restrictions would.

Raleigh adopted Stage 1 water rules on Aug. 28, limiting outdoor watering to specified morning and evening hours one day a week – a hand-held hose is allowed on a second day – and restricting car-washing and the use of power washers by the general public.

The rules have reduced demand by 18 percent, to less than 55 million gallons on an average day.

"We're hoping to come down an additional 10 percent to under 50 million gallons a day, instead of the 55 million gallons it is currently," Meeker said.

Despite the reductions, the drought has continued to drain Falls Lake, the primary reservoir for Raleigh and several Wake County towns that buy water from the city. Lake levels are more than 7 feet below normal.

City Manager Russell Allen said the city plans to speak with the Army Corps of Engineers about releasing water into the Neuse River from other area lakes in order to reduce the water needed from Falls Lake. Downstream communities depend on the Neuse for water, as does wildlife.

"We think it's a good backup for us," Allen said. "It could buy us 45 days or so of water supply."

In a worst-case scenario, city leaders said, Raleigh would be out of water by the end of January.


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  • nchunter Oct 9, 2007

    Keep your lawn looking its best. Local company providing lawn watering services. Please contact me if we can help.

  • gkgreene Oct 9, 2007

    We do not have sufficient water but yet we continue to build and add additional demand everyday. Same thing for roads in Raleigh, but we do have a nice downtown.

  • shine Oct 9, 2007

    " Raleigh to look at tougher watering rules "

    Keep on looking and don't start doing....... and the problem will handle itself - no doubt.

  • Deb1003 Oct 9, 2007

    Also, the ones that break the rules, obviously can afford the fine....that's why certain neighborhoods have a consistently high occurence of offenders.

  • dlb800 Oct 9, 2007

    I can't believe some of the people on this forum. Who's the
    genius who says "Let's penalize those who don't reduce their
    water consumption by 20%".

    What if you CAN'T reduce your water consumption by 20%?

    We don't water our lawn, haven't washed our cars for how long?
    We drink bottled water, so all we use city water for is to
    shower, wash dishes, wash clothes, and our dogs to drink.

    What should we stop doing? Showering? Washing dishes?

  • Deb1003 Oct 9, 2007

    Recently, I reconfigured the pipe that drains the water taken through the a/c system and placed a barrel under it to catch the water. I was surprised by the amount of water that is extracted through the humidity in my home. With the recent high heat and humidity we're experiencing, the a/c runs a lot. I know it's not enough to keep the lawn green, but it's enough to water the few shrubs that I'd prefer to save in my landscaping.

  • Made In USA Oct 9, 2007

    There's as many ways to save on water usage as their are ways to save money. I went out to Jordan Lake this weekend for the annual Heritage Day Festival and the lake is way down...I mean waaaay down. Many boat ramps are closed, even some access areas are closed, so this drought issue is getting quite serious. We MUST CONSERVE what water we have left. Otherwise, our officials are going to really crack down on it's usage. I personally would rather do as needed rather than do as told by force.

  • Made In USA Oct 9, 2007

    Unless you use some crazy and potent type of soap for bathing, this graywater can be used to water your perinnials outside. I have been using mine for my hydrangeas and they're thriving.

    Turn down the volume to the spigots. Whether rinsing dishes, washing hands, or brushing teeth, a huge amount of water can be saved by doing this.

    In the shower, once I get all wet, I simply turn off the water until I start rinsing myself off. Do this and you'll see a reduction in your water bill.

    Waiting for the water to come out hot? Well, save that cooler water for something else. No need to let it go down the drain. Use it for your coffee pot, your flowers, or for cooking.

  • Marc3939 Oct 9, 2007

    Just ration the water out. Every household gets a certain amount. I have a feeling the watering of lawns will stop when they have none to drink and wash with at the end of the first month.

    We have people watering legally every single minute they are allowed to keep their precious lawn green. Turn off their water after their allotment is gone and let them buy distilled water by the gallon at the store.

  • rpd2459 Oct 9, 2007

    y is it that you can type what ever you want about this stupid water issue but when it come to an issue that concerns race you edited? By the way, there is plenty of water..........
    at the beach!