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Water ideas flow in

February 19, 2009

Re "Dealing with drought," Feb. 13

I applaud The Times for pointing out the need for serious action to deal with the drought, and for saying that "Angelenos must learn to treat today's drought conditions as the new normal."

I'm disappointed that Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has apparently focused only on persuading current DWP customers to reduce water consumption.

No matter how much current water users cut back, their efforts will be swamped if the number of users continues to grow at an exponential rate. The Los Angeles Basin faces the likelihood of what might be called "peak water" in the coming decades. We'll need a careful overall plan for allocating and tracking water use based on conservative estimates of what will be available to the basin.

We need a large-scale initiative to conserve and reuse the water supplies we do have. This could, in effect, give us a temporary source of new water while we transition to a water-limited economy and society.

And we should implement all feasible ways to cut back flushing "waste" water to the ocean, over time getting to the point of reusing every possible drop of water.

Don Dwiggins

Northridge

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There is one simple solution: Fix the sprinklers.

In my neighborhood in Westwood, I typically count two to four sprinklers in a four-block area that are continually leaking, usually unknown to the owners.

By my rough extrapolation, this works out to about 2,000 gallons per square mile per day -- or about 1 million gallons per day for all of Los Angeles.

Frederick Allen

Los Angeles

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