The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Jenny Hoffner, American Rivers, 404-373-3602

New Bill Makes Georgia a National Leader in Water Efficiency

American Rivers Calls for More Water Efficiency Measures to Ensure Reliable, Predictable Clean Water Supplies


Georgia took an important step today toward ensuring more reliable and predictable clean water supplies for today's communities and future generations. The senate unanimously passed the Georgia Water Stewardship Bill, and the house passed the bill 166-5.

American Rivers applauded the cost-effective water efficiency measures contained in the bill, including higher efficiency standards for toilets, faucets, urinals and cooling towers, standardized leak reporting by public water utilities, metering of multi-family, commercial and industrial construction, and a statewide outdoor watering schedule that prohibits watering during the hottest hours of the day when evaporation and water waste is highest.

"Georgia now leads most states in the nation when it comes to 21st century water supply solutions," said Jenny Hoffner, water supply program director for American Rivers.

Only two others states, California and Texas, have adopted similar high efficiency plumbing standards, however their implementation date is 2014, well beyond Georgia's July 2012 date. No other state requires the sub-metering of multi-unit residential, commercial and industrial buildings in addition to billing based on the actual water use.

American Rivers called the bill an important step forward and encouraged more states in the Southeast and across the country to take Georgia's lead and implement these and other cost-effective, proven and reliable water efficiency measures that will secure water supply right now.

American Rivers did an analysis using well-tested practices already in use in many cities, and determined that by implementing simple water efficiency policies metro Atlanta alone could save as much as 210 million gallons per day - this is more than an entire new Lake Lanier.

It has been consistently demonstrated that water secured through efficiency costs significantly less than water secured through reservoirs. Water efficiency on average costs between 46 cents to $250 per 1000 gallons, while reservoirs can cost upwards of $4000 per $1000 gallons.

American Rivers is the only national organization standing up for healthy rivers so our communities can thrive. Through national advocacy, innovative solutions and our growing network of strategic partners, we protect and promote our rivers as valuable assets that are vital to our health, safety and quality of life. Founded in 1973, American Rivers has more than 65,000 members and supporters nationwide, with offices in Washington, DC and the Mid-Atlantic, Northeast, Midwest, Southeast, California and Northwest regions.