awe state scorecard

April 2018: Report Card Season

The year is 2012
The Alliance for Water Efficiency (AWE) and Environmental Law Institute (ELI) recently released a 5-year update of their state-by-state scorecard regarding laws and policies that support water conservation and efficiency. The score – based on a battery of survey responses – touched upon topics such as water loss control, appliances and fixtures standards, conservation and drought planning, funding, assistance, billing and more.

So, how’d we do?
Well, the U.S. averaged a “C”, the same grade awarded in 2012. Six states slipped on their 2012 score, but an impressive 26 improved their grade and more states achieved an “A” or “B” in 2017 than in 2012. So the net is: good growth, opportunity to improve. See the report here.

The year is 2022
Can you guess which states improved on their 2012 score? Why? Were they victims of drought, politically innovative, financially motivated, technically pioneering or something else? Now consider the 2022 scorecard – will the changes be reactionary or anticipatory?

“Water conservation and efficiency ensure the health and vibrancy of communities and businesses nationwide.”


➣When is drought not a drought? (8 minute read)
Last month the Colorado River Research Group published a fantastic piece regarding the words we use to describe our changing physical environment. In place of drought, the group suggests an alternative that describes a period of transition to an increasingly water scarce environment.

➣What will you name your drain? (1 minute read)
Virginia Beach is using an innovative mapping program to support its “Adopt-A-Drain” program, allowing residents to pick a storm drain (there are 40,000 choices), name it and keep an eye on it in the event of issues. The open dialogue, attentive watch and occasional civic clearing is expected to save the city $35,000 / year. Way to go Virginia Beach!

➣ I understand where you’re coming from (3 minute read)
A recent study published in the latest issue of Water Resources Research found that the more a utility communicates with its ratepayers, the more the ratepayers agree with political leaders and professional water managers. This complements ongoing efforts from AWE and others to educate customers regarding the [true] value of water and should be noted among staff considering restrictions or rate increases.


What’s happening at Dropcountr

What a month!

  • We saw a bunch of familiar faces at the Sustainable Water Management Conference in Seattle. Austin Krcmarik did an excellent job presenting several of Denver Water’s community-based social marketing conservation programsyou can find his deck (and a look at the DW-Dropcountr program) here.
  • Dropcountr co-signed AWE’s letter to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt in support of WaterSense and are happy to report the program is continued in this year’s budget.
  • MassDEP continued their support for our program with Dedham Westwood Water District in Massachusetts and we opened up a 15-month Spring Pilot Program to utilities that partner with us before June 1. Drop us a line or reply to this email for more details.

Sending our best,
Team Dropcountr

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