What Is A Water Conservation Plan?

A water conservation plan is a written document that contains existing and proposed water conservation measures describing what will be done by retail water providers, water conservancy districts, and the end user of culinary water to help conserve water and reduce its use in the state in terms of per-capita consumption so that adequate supplies of water are available for future needs (§73-10-32). At a minimum, water conservation plans are required by the State of Utah to be updated every five years.

A water conservation plan may include information regarding:

  • Installation and use of water-efficient fixtures and appliances, including toilets, shower fixtures, and faucets;
  • Residential and commercial landscapes and irrigation that require less water to maintain;
  • More water-efficient industrial and commercial processes involving the use of water;
  • Water reuse systems, both potable and non-potable;
  • Distribution system leak repair;
  • Dissemination of public information regarding more efficient use of water, including public education programs, customer water use audits, and water-saving demonstrations;
  • Water rate structures designed to encourage more efficient use of water;
  • Statue, ordinances, codes, or regulations designed to encourage more efficient use of water by means such as water efficient fixtures and landscapes;
  • Incentives to implement water efficient techniques, including rebates to water users to encourage the implementation of more water-efficient measures; and
  • Other measures designed to conserve water.

According to state statute, water conservation plans must contain:

  • A clearly stated overall water use reduction goal and an implementation plan for each of the water conservation measures it chooses to use, including a timeline for action and an evaluation process to measure progress;
  • A requirement that each water conservancy district and retail water provider devote part of at least one regular meeting every five years of its governing body to a discussion and formal adoption of the water conservation plan, and allow public comment on it;
  • A requirement that a notification procedure be implemented that includes the delivery of the water conservation plan to the media and to the governing body of each municipality and county served by the water conservancy district or retail water provider; and
  • A copy of the minutes of the meeting and the notification procedure, which must be added as an appendix to the plan.

Does Your Municipality Need One?

In addition to water conservancy districts, retail water providers are required to have a water conservation plan.

Note: Retail water providers are defined in §73-10-32 of Utah State Code as an entity that supplies culinary water to end users and has more than 500 service connections.