In support of the Provincial Drought Response, the City of Kelowna Water Utility will implement odd/even watering restrictions for its customers beginning Tuesday, Aug. 4.
“The restrictions for Kelowna Water Utility support the provincial water conservation goals and will help prepare us for any future water restrictions that may be required should the drought conditions continue year over year,” said Kevin Van Vliet, City of Kelowna utility services manager.
“Odd/even watering is also effective in reducing peak water demand, which helps decrease the stress on our water system as a whole,” he said.
The restriction means that properties with an address ending in an odd number can water on odd calendar days and those with an even address number can water on even calendar days. Automatic underground irrigation systems may run between midnight and 6 a.m. Manual sprinklers and watering by hose (hand watering) can occur between 6 and 11 a.m. or 6 p.m. and midnight on the scheduled odd/even day.
Odd/even watering will be in place until Sept. 30 when the city will re-evaluate the need for restrictions.
Kelowna has achieved significant progress in water conservation, giving the utility an edge in drought years. More than 15 years ago, residential and commercial water meters were installed and variable water rates were introduced to encourage water conservation year round. The variable rates demonstrate the value of water to customers by increasing rates as water consumption rises.
From 2003 to 2014, single-family residential water consumption decreased by 20% per capita in the City of Kelowna utility area.
The Kelowna Water Utility is a robust system that gets its water from Okanagan Lake. While the lake and the utility are currently able to support customers’ water demands, the city recognizes the ongoing need for smart use of water as a resource. 2015 Okanagan Lake level is characterized by the Water Office of Canada and the Okanagan Basin Water Board as slightly lower than normal at this time.
The Kelowna Water Utility provides water to just over half of the Kelowna population. Most of the remaining residents receive their water from one of four water purveyors who have their own water supply rates, requirements and restrictions.
For more information about watering restrictions, water conservation tips and to find out which water provider serves you, visit kelowna.ca/utilities.