Saturday, June 20, 2015

Phase Three Water Restrictions on . . . Catalina Island?

Catalina Island: a destination resort, may be facing not just Phase Two, but Phase Three water restrictions, according to one source.

Speaking with local residents and visitors to the island off the coast of the South Bay, I have learned that the limitations on water usage have increased to such an extent, that restaurants and hotels must now send their dirty launder and other cleaning needs off the island and to the mainland in order to be taken care of.

Wow! And I though that the water restrictions in Torrance were severe!

Phase One restrictions in Torrance outlined limited watering of lawns.

In the city of Torrance, Phase Two included limits on water service. In restaurants, for example, patrons would have to request water before it would be served.

What would Phase Three look like?

Avalon Catalina photo D Ramey Logan.jpg
Aerial view of Catalina Island (D Ramsey Logan)

I spoke with one individual working on the island. She commented that Phase Three restrictions will start in September. Either residents and businesses decrease water usage, or pay higher prices.

A little perspective will help us to understand the hardships facing Catalina Island and likely to face more regions in the state, if reforms are put in place to spare residents.

Catalina Islander Logo

In May, 2015, the Catalina Islander reported on Phase One restrictions:

According to Harvey [Southern California Edison spokesman], Phase One will require Islanders (and visitors) to reduce water by prohibiting the washing of streets, driveways, parking lots, piers and other hard surfaces. Phase One will also prohibit washing vehicles such as golf carts, trailers and boats. Fresh water from fire hydrants may only be used to fight fires. Watering landscapes would be limited to 7 to 9 a.m. and 5 to 7 p.m.

When would Phase Two commence?

According to the presentation, Phase Two begins when the reservoir’s water level drops below 300 acre feet. In Phase Two water rationing, Edison’s Island customers would have a limit placed on the number of gallons they could use daily.

Amazing. Catalina Island, the illustrious getaway that was a playground for Hollywood celebrities, is losing water fast, and now residents will find their usage rationed.

Local communities throughout the state are running out of water, and residents are struggling to figure out how to deal with the widespread lack.

The New American Media has detailed the hardships of Central Valley Farmers struggling to put food on the table for their families.

CBS News reported on Mountain House, California (a planned community in San Joaquin County, an hour outside of San Francisco):

The faucets for thousands of Californians could run dry within the next few days as new statewide restrictions may cut off water supplies in response to the historic drought.

In the community of Mountain House, California, leaders are desperate for a solution to keep the water running, reports CBS News correspondent John Blackstone.
The busy water park in town is a place where residents can briefly forget the community of 15,000 is threatened with having its only source of water cut off . . .

Now, resort town Catalina Island will face Phase Three restrictions.

Residents of the South Bay need to recognize not only the water crisis across the country, but they need to see that the drought is directly and deeply affecting us in our own backyard. Not only have restrictions forced homeowners to plead for exemptions to prevent their homes getting red-tagged, but even the vacation destination off our coasts is feeling the water pinch.

I have contacted the CEO of the Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce, and I plan to have more updates on the draconian water restrictions to face a Avalon in the near future.

It's hard for me to imagine, that even ritzy Catalina cannot run or ignore the water crisis drying up the state of California.

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