Councillor Shelley Carroll

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Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Toronto Water asks residents to reduce water use

Toronto Water is asking city residents and businesses to voluntarily reduce their outdoor water usage during this extreme heat wave. To avoid a potential water shortage, the City is seeking residents’ help to lower the amount of water being used. During extreme hot and dry weather, it could become difficult to keep water supply levels at capacity. Reducing non-essential water usage will help ensure pumping stations and water reservoirs meet current demands.

Here are some outdoor water efficiency tips:

1. Reduce the number of times you water your lawn – healthy lawns only need 2.5 cm (1”) of water per week, including rainfall2. Use a rain gauge to track the water falling on your lawn from your sprinkler and the rain3. Water your lawn early in the morning to avoid water evaporation4. Leave grass clippings on your lawn as they provide natural nutrients and moisture5. Use a broom – not a water hose – to sweep up debris or clean your driveways and walkways6. Fill a small pool for your kids to cool off in, rather than leaving the sprinkler on7. Take a break: skip washing your car during heat spells

Reducing indoor water usage can also help decrease current demands. Only turn on your dishwasher and washing machine once you have a full load.

In the meantime, the City of Toronto is requesting City departments, agencies, boards and commissions to suspend all non-essential outdoor water use. This includes activities such as:

• Landscape irrigation• Washing exterior building surfaces, parking lots, driveways or sidewalks• Street and vehicle washing• Transit vehicle washing such as subway cars and buses

For more information on water efficiency tips, go to our Web site at: