IBJ’s Nov. 2 editorial “Study water needs while there’s time” should have noted the value of conservation in meeting future needs. Available supply should be carefully stewarded and not “promiscuously pumped,” as one water expert recently put it.
From attending many of the recent meetings of the Citizens Water board and its technical advisory group, it’s clear that supply during droughts is indeed strained.
Yet a recent consultant report on water supply for Boone County didn’t even mention water conservation. It only considered finding and financing new supply.
San Antonio reduced per-capita daily use from 225 gallons to 115 gallons within 25 years by instilling and implementing a water conservation ethic. The water utility there pumps less from the local river than it did in the early 1980s—with 67 percent more customers.
If the principal public goal continues to be the unlimited growth of the urbanized area in central Indiana—along with the perpetuation of our highly wasteful lawn irrigation practices—we will inevitably be forced to continually search for new, increasingly expensive supplies.