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California government elites use 500% more water than citizens


Drought

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(NaturalNews) At at time when water conservation should be a high priority in drought-plagued California, it would appear that something else has been deemed a high priority: an elitist mind set whereby people self-appoint themselves as an exception to the rule.

In the drying up state, this disturbing way of thinking is taking place at the Los Angeles mayoral mansion, Getty House, where it's been reported that approximately 2,100 gallons of water are used per day.

You read correctly.

Over 2,000 gallons of water is being used at Mayor Eric Garcetti's residence on a daily basis in a state that's in desperate need of the resource.

California can't afford excessive, unnecessary water use

Indeed, the events unfolding in the state are alarming, causing agricultural, societal and economic balances to unravel quickly. The Sacramento and San Joaquin River basins have been impacted the most; between 2011 and 2014, 4 trillion gallons of water have been lost there every year, more than all 38 million California residents use annually. Reservoir levels continue to fall. Wildfires have spread. Statewide drought emergencies have been declared. Wells are drying up.

The problem is of great concern with far-reaching global consequences, especially pertaining to food shortages. While climate change is a factor in the rapid change, groundwater use for agricultural purposes is a significant reason behind the droughts.

L.A. Mayor explains why his house uses over five times the amount of water than average L.A. household

Still, thousands of gallons of water are used at Getty House - some 5.4 times more than the approximate 390 gallons used daily by the average L.A. household - which Garcetti attributes to public visits that frequently take place inside the building. "It functions as an event space, a living museum and offices. We happen to live upstairs," he says, explaining that the water use is not due to the activity of just one or two people. "We had 4,000-plus people who went through that house just last year alone. Whether a mayor lives there or not, that is a public space. The entire property is not a quote-unquote 'home.'"

Still, one has to question the daily consumption, as the reported amount is unfathomable. While the fact that it's a public space is understandable, the amount of faucet use and toilet flushing that must be transpiring there daily still seems absurd. To put it in perspective, the average daily reported water use at Getty House is 5.4 times greater than the roughly 390 gallons used by the average L.A. household.

To add irony to the matter, Garcetti has urged residents to cut back on their own water intake, encouraging them to reduce their use by 20 percent over the next few years. "Our relationship with water must evolve," Garcetti says. "We cannot afford the water policies of the past. We must conserve, recycle and rethink how we use our water to save money and make sure that we have enough water to keep L.A. growing."

To reinforce the seriousness behind his message, the Mayor's office will provide L. A. residents with a $100 rebate if they collect rainwater in barrels for the purpose of irrigating gardens and watering plants. Furthermore, it's been reported that Garcetti has personally taken measures to improve water use on his property; turf around the mansion has been replaced with more drought-friendly methods and the irrigation system there has been updated.

Still, several people remain bothered by the extreme use of water, calling it unnecessary and extravagant.

Is reckless water use by those in power a trend?

Perhaps it's a sad trend: his predecessor Antonio Villaraigosa, used three percent MORE water.

Technically, therefore, water use in Getty House under Garcetti's leadership is currently reflecting a conservation, albeit a minimal one that hardly makes a dent in addressing California's horrific condition.

Is this water use truly a case of need based on the amount of people who pass through a political powerhouse's building? Or are the powers that be indulging in excess, attempting to grasp at a logical excuse that justifies the waste?

Sources:

(1) http://losangeles.cbslocal.com

(2) http://www.usatoday.com

(3) http://www.latimes.com

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