Joshua Tree, CA— In the recent wake of Governor Brown’s statewide drought declaration, the Joshua Basin Water District (JBWD) continues to encourage its residents to keep conserving water because it’s working. While many other communities instituted mandatory water conservation measures across the state, the Joshua Basin Water District’s “in place” aggressive water conservation program, along with its’ “in progress” water basin recharge storage project, has given their local community a jump-start on protecting their most valuable resource: water!
Beverages, food, community health, clothing, and quality of life (think: swimming pools) all depend on water. Living in the desert, the message of protecting water resources is a way of life! A noticeable observation when you crest the Morongo grade is the absence of lush green lawns. Why? It just doesn’t work in the desert, that’s why! In fact, due to local efforts towards public education campaigns, our desert residents now recognize that desert-friendly landscaping is not just cost-effective, but water-wise with great curb appeal.
Beyond conservation, understanding the desert’s unique geology is critical in developing long-term sustainable water management solutions. The desert’s primary source of water is the natural groundwater supply that is fed by water runoff from the local mountains. This underground reservoir provides supply and offers critical storage capacity that allows the region to reduce its reliance on imported water supplies during times of drought or when State Water Project allocations are restricted for other reasons.
The Joshua Basin Water District recognizes forward thinking in preserving our community’s water resources. Water District Boards, comprised of past and present community members, have served as stewards protecting our water resources. They consider the cycles of droughts and years that bring replenishing waters in the different decisions they need to make. Unfortunately, years of replenishing waters are not prominent in our desert region.
While the current drought is in the forefront of state issues, it didn’t take the JBWD by surprise. The Joshua Basin Water District has been planning for it. The Water District just recently completed the installation of their recharge pipeline, and they are currently working to complete the construction of their water basin recharge ponds. This will enable the JBWD to systematically replenish water in their currently over-drafted water basin.
This winning combination of conservation and groundwater recharge and storage is clearly a win-win solution for the community of Joshua Tree. Learning how every community resident can seriously make a difference with minimal effort in sustaining our water resources can be found at the JBWD website at : www.JBWD.org, go to our “Using Water Wisely” tab!
Locals are also invited to a spring “Water Education Day”, being held at the JBWD at 61750 Chollita Road, in Joshua Tree this coming March 30th, Sunday, from 1PM-4PM. The area’s Morongo Basin water providers, along with supportive groups, are sponsoring this event. This day of family education is free to the public, and offers a native plant sale, along with water conservation and quality exhibits, water wise garden tours, native plant and seed swap opportunities…and more! For more information, contact Kathleen Radnich at 760.821.5716.
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