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Kevin Reidy
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Water Efficiency

What Is Water Efficiency?
Quite simply, water efficiency is doing more with less – not doing without. Water efficiency efforts include the practices, techniques and technologies that extend water supplies and other resources (e.g. energy) by either saving water or through substituting with alternative supplies such as reuse. This, in turn, frees up water supplies for other uses, such as new development, stored drought reserves, agricultural leases, and environmental uses (e.g. instream flows). Water efficiency is inclusive of water conservation and includes both system demands and customer water demands.

Why Plan for Water Efficiency?
Long-term water efficiency planning is needed to extend Colorado’s water supply as demands increase from a growing population. As the Statewide Water Supply Initiative (SWSI) outlined, water efficiency planning should be integrated into local water resource planning to achieve overall water resource management goals. Water efficiency planning can help water providers identify where future planning efforts need to be focused, examine the effect of water efficiency on future water supply and demand, and estimate how water efficiency may affect (e.g. reduce) the need for and costs of new water supplies and other investments. Best Management Practices are good tools for developing comprehensive water efficiency plans.

For more information about how to develop a water efficiency plan, visit the CWCB Water Conservation Planning page.

What Are the Benefits of Water Efficiency?
Lowering water demands as a result of water efficiency can assist providers in avoiding, downsizing, or postponing the construction and operation of water supply facilities and wastewater facilities as well as eliminating, reducing, or postponing water purchases. In addition to these water supply benefits, there are other societal, political, and environmental benefits.

Examples of such benefits include:
  • Reduction of wastewater discharges through indoor water savings which can improve water quality and aquatic habitat.
  • Reduction of outdoor irrigation runoff which can improve water quality.
  • Demonstrating commitment to sustainability.
  • Meeting political and regulatory requirements necessary to obtain permitting for local and regional water supply projects.
  • Demonstrating leadership to the community that being more efficient is the right thing to do in an arid environment.
  • Lowering operational costs such as pumping and water treatment.
  • Lowering amount of chemicals needed to treat water.


            Helenium Autumnale

 Additional Information

SB14-103 Water Fixture Bill FAQs
In 2014 the Colorado General Assembly passed Senate Bill 14-103 (SB103) which requires that by September 1, 2016 manufacturers of certain types of indoor plumbing fixtures sell only WaterSense labeled products in the State of Colorado. The goal of this legislation is to reduce water use in Colorado where the population is growing rapidly and water supplies are spread increasingly thin. This Frequently-Asked-Questions web-page explains these requirements and the simple one-time manufacturer reporting requirement.
Did you know reducing water can lead
to BIG savings? 
  • ­Watering your landscape in the early morning or late evening can save up to 40% of water. ­
  • Washing clothes in a high efficiency washer can save 6,000 gallons per household annually. ­
  • Xeriscaping uses 42% less water than traditional landscaping.
  •  Check out even more savings! 

Rainwater Harvesting Pilot Project Program
The CWCB has developed Criteria and Guidelines to provide guidance for the Rainwater Harvesting Pilot Project Program application and approval process. The goal of the pilot program is to gain information about the feasibility of rainwater and snowmelt harvesting as a water conservation measure in Colorado.