ALLIANCE for WATER AWARENESS and CONSERVATION
The District remains an active participant in the Alliance for Water Awareness and Conservation (AWAC). The District is partnering with Mojave Water Agency to provide educational outreach in irrigation water conservation in both residential and agricultural forums as well as other water conservation topics for the AWAC, both in attending events and currently in the video workshop arena. The mission of this dynamic coalition of over 20 regional organizations is to promote the efficient use of water and increase awareness of conservation as an important tool to ensure an adequate water supply.
Due to the Covid-19 restrictions the necessity of creativity came about and the outreach and education turned to computer platforms such as Zoom presentations with a captive audience.
Joshua Basin Water District came on board with water conservation education requests and helped start the momentum. Originally scheduling a few online workshops, the demand was quickly expanded, consequently over 22 presentation workshops were given over the fiscal year, along with9 presentations/lectures of water conservation. With some Covid restrictions lifted in 2021 over five workshops were able to be in person and hands-on covering irrigation system design, water auditing and system maintenance.
Several “Cash for Grass” visits – another MWA conservation program -were conducted with City of Victorville, Barstow Cemetery District and the Ashwood Golf Course. These AWAC program visits covered the entire Mojave Water Agency service area including, Victorville, Apple Valley, Barstow, Newberry Springs, and Joshua Tree. While no in person events were held this fiscal year due to Covid-19restrictions, the AWAC program headed by Tony Walters, Conservation Specialist, was able to reach over 130 people directly. Workshop presentations covered a variety of water conservation topics such as but not limited to irrigation design, irrigation maintenance, irrigation scheduling and new irrigation technologies. Outdoor garden education such as soil amendments for conservation, desert native plants and xeriscaping were high attendance presentations. Even topics on how the desert gets its water, how a growing garden can flourish in the desert and still conserve water, and the benefits of mulching were presented. The four specific goals of AWAC are:
Serve as a network to assist agencies in educating the public on water conservation.
Provide resources with a consistent message to help agencies meet their respective conservation goals.
Maintain current gallons per capita per day GPCD) or lower and continue to position agencies for meeting future conservation needs.
Exchange ideas between agencies, especially at quarterly meetings.
A calendar featuring low water use plants is published annually to heighten the public’s awareness of water efficient landscaping. These calendars are freely available to the public through AWAC members.