Center for
  Environmental Law & Policy

CELP’s Water Programs

•  Restoring Rivers
•  Water Rights
•  Columbia Watershed
•  Governmental Affairs
•  Water Future

Three Activities for Conservation Activists:

(1)	Please comment on pending Water Purveyor Conservation Goals and Plans:
a.	Washington State University (deadline 8/20 at 4:00 pm – send to Gary Wells, WSU Facilities Operations, PO Box 641150, Pullman, WA, 99164-1150 or by email to  )

(2)	Call your water purveyor and ask them to put you on their notification list for the public meeting.  
a.	When you get notice, e-mail CELP and we’ll put it on the web.
b.	Purveyors – we are happy to post information about your public comment period here!  
c.	E-mail us at

(3)	Call or e-mail Dept. of Health and demand that they create a centralized website for all water purveyor public meetings!  
a.	Send your message to DOH care of or call 360-236-3154.

Coming soon:  Talking Points for Water Conservation Advocates:  
How to Get Your Water Purveyor to 
Set Good Goals for Water Conservation!

Water Efficiency & Conservation

CELP’s Current Activities

The Department of Health’s water efficiency rule for Washington’s municipal water purveyors was finalized and became effective on January 22, 2007.  Click here for rule language, fact sheets and the new Water Use Efficiency Guidebook (which tells water purveyors how to comply with the rule).  Now it’s time for implementation!

Conservation-Minded Citizens take note!  Water purveyors with 1,000 or more connections must establish water conservation goals by January 22, 2008.  A public meeting is required!  This means that if you live in a town or city, your water utility will soon be asking your opinion regarding how much water they should conserve and how to do it.

How Do I Know When My Water Utility Will Hold a Public Meeting to Set Conservation Goals?

Water purveyors must give two weeks’ notice before holding a public meeting to set their conservation goals.   Goal-setting is an incredibly important activity.  Citizens must get involved.

Where and how is this public notice given?  

Good question!  According to the Water Efficiency Guidebook, notice can and should be given in a variety of ways, including bill stuffers, e-mail, posters, advertisements, web page and news releases.  

The Washington Dept. of Health is considering setting up a centralized website for purveyors to put information on the web.  Right now, we are not hopeful that DOH will do that – and we encourage you to send a message to DOH asking them to provide that critical service!  Contact DOH at or call 360-236-3154.

How Low Can We Go?  

All municipal water suppliers must set water use efficiency goals and record these goals in planning documents and performance reports. When setting water use efficiency goals, the municipal water supplier must:

o	Include a measurable outcome in terms of water production or consumption (for example: reduce peak production volumes by 5%, maintain current single family residential use, and reduce leakage from 30 to 10%).
o	Address water supply and forecasted demand characteristics
o	Include an implementation schedule for meeting the goals

There are a number of requirements in the new DOH rule – but the bottom line is that water purveyors get to set their own goals.  Thus it is imperative that the public demand water efficiency.  

The utilities won’t adopt strict standards on their own – they need to hear that their consumers and the public demand it!

For more information, click here to check out the brand new DOH Water Use Efficiency Guidelines.

Please contact CELP if we can provide more information.