At-home water trackers will soon be tested in the City of Los Angeles as a means of conservation in the midst of a drought.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) pilot program Thursday, saying the trackers, which go by the name “Flume,” will be a tool for residents to “stay on top” of their personal water use.
“We don’t need a crystal ball to see that skyrocketing temperatures and dying reservoirs are in our future, so we need to keep finding ways to help Angelenos double down on their historic efforts to conserve,” Mayor Eric Garcetti said in a statement. “While Angelenos have taken our calls to cut back to heart, it can be hard to manage what you can’t measure – and now, thanks to the Flume device, customers can have the awareness they need to stay on top of their water use and understand where and when they need to be doing a better job of conserving.”
The Wi-Fi enabled device attaches to residential water meters, collecting data for water use, searching for possible water leaks and creating a “water budget.” The data can then be viewed through an app where customers can create water goals for their self-set “budgets.”
“A key part of being more conscientious about our water use is understanding how we’re actually using that water,” LADWP General Manager Martin L. Adams said in a statement. “Currently, our customers learn their home’s water use through their bi-monthly LADWP bill, but through the Flume device, we can get this information into our customers’ hands in real time, empowering them to make more informed decisions about their water use, to detect a potential leak, and ultimately to save on their water bill.”
The city will also be offering discounts to single-family homes that buy the device, that could potentially bring down the cost from $199 to $24 after a rebate.
The water-tracking program comes as the city of Los Angeles has seen record lows in summer water use, seeing a 10% reduction in use this August and an 11% reduction in July, compared to 2021.
In June, water restrictions were given to LADWP customers, allowing them to use outdoor water only twice per week, with the days dictated by street addresses, and watering being prohibited between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m.
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