Drought Affects Bishop Water Supply

377 West Line Street – Bishop, California 93514
Post Office Box 1236 – Bishop, California 93515
760-873-8458 publicworks@ca-bishop.us
Public Works News Release 24 July 2014 

Drought Affects Bishop Water Supply

The drought is measurably affecting the wells that supply water to City of Bishop and the city continues to encourage its customers to conserve water. The City of Bishop monitors the water level in the two wells that are the source of water provided to city water customers. The water levels in these two wells is measurably
lower than usual due to the drought. Even though ground water is lower that usual, so far it is not a critical risk to the city water supply.

The wells are both about 400 feet deep and the water level is still close the surface but now 5 to 15 feet lower than usual. Seeing the affect of the drought on the Bishop water supply makes this a good time to remember what can be done to conserve this precious resource, and save money too.

Most people in California are affected by mandatory 20% reductions in water use. Although these mandates do not affect City of Bishop water customers due to the small size of the city, water conservation is still strongly encouraged.

Water use in the City of Bishop is always high, especially during the warm parts of the year. In fact, water use in Bishop is several times the national average. Water use in Bishop is high even when compared to other communities that have a hot arid summer
climate. Reducing the amount of water used protects ground water levels in the Bishop area and reduces the amount of electricity needed to pump the water out of the ground.

Reducing electricity use to pump the water saves money so water rates can be lower.

Here are some water saving tips:

Irrigation: Irrigation of lawns and landscaping uses the most water in Bishop by far. A huge amount of water is wasted by over-watering lawns and plants in the yard. Just water what your lawn and plants need, no more. Public Works News Release 24 July 2014 Page 2 of 2

Gutter Water: A clear indicator of over-watering is irrigation water running into the street gutter. Water running down the street is a distressingly familiar sight this time of
year and is prohibited.

Water Mornings: In most cases watering in early morning is best to get the water to your plants and lawn. Whenever you choose to water, avoid watering in the heat of the day.

Adjust Sprinklers: Well adjusted sprinkler heads and properly timed automatic sprinkler controls waste less water. Check your sprinkler heads to make sure water is going just where it should and check your automatic controls to make sure the time and duration your sprinklers operate is right. Consider a “smart timer” for your automatic sprinkler control that adjusts for the weather.

Thirsty Plants: Landscaping with native plants and other plants that aren’t so thirsty is becoming more popular. Swapping your thirsty plants with ones that are less thirsty (and still look great) will save a lot of water.

Indoors: Most Bishop water is used outside but saving water inside can add up too. Don’t leave water running if you don’t need it and replace fixtures with water saving types.

Incentives: The City of Bishop offers water conservation incentives to its customers in the forms of giveaways and rebates. Saving water saves money, reduces water rates, protects groundwater, and is the right thing to do.

Contact the City of Bishop Department of Public Works at 873-8458 for more information on water conservation and the City’s water system.