Could you imagine a day without water? That’s what the city of Bend wants you to think about.
Bend partnered Wednesday with a nonprofit, the Value of Water, to promote the campaign ‘Imagine a Day Without Water’ and the importance and value of water resources that many people take for granted.
Bend’s water utility supplies water to about 75% of people in the city, and this year, that supply peaked at 28 million gallons of water in one day. On average, Bend water customers will use 13 million gallons of water a day. That’s about 70,000 people, and it does not count include the people visiting or people who live outside Bend but work in the city.
Most Bend residents use fewer than 50 gallons of water per day indoors. But many use several times that amount outdoors, for landscape irrigation.
” While somebody may be an efficient user indoors and use 50 gallons or less per day, maybe even far less than that — 25, 30, or 35 gallons of water a day — they can easily use many times that, ” said Mike Buettner , the city’s Water Conservation Program manager. ” During the growing seasons, residents can use two, three or four times that amount outdoors. ”
To help combat water waste, Bend implemented an irrigation usage schedule for residents. In the rules, there is no irrigation allowed between 9 a.m. and 5 p-m on any given day.
Bend Utility has also introduced a new WaterSmart feature to its customers this year — a consumer portal that will notify Bend water customers how much water they use. The program can show you how your water usage compares to properties of the same size.
It also benefits the city. According to Buettner , the city is benefiting from the program’s water leak notification capability.
” WaterSmart is a new customer engagement portal for Bend water users to be able to visit and look at their water use in real time and really get a thorough understanding of where they are using their water, whether it’s indoors, outdoors or where their greatest opportunity for savings exist, ” Buettner said.
Aaron Schneck of Bend said he tries to conserve water.
” When it’s starting to cool off a little bit , you can use less water for irrigation and make sure your dishwasher is full before you run it, ” he said.
During winter months, the average number of gallons used by Bend residents will go down to between 5 and 6 million gallons of water a day.
Residents are advised to winterize their irrigation systems. Excess water should be freed from the pipes and sprinklers so that it won’t freeze and expand to break irrigation pipes.