California residents cut water use by hefty 29% in May


Drought-weary California received encouraging news Wednesday when officials announced that residential water use had dropped 29% during the month of May -- the first real indication that the state might meet unprecedented conservation reductions imposed by Gov. Jerry Brown. The cut in water usage suggests the aggressive campaign to get residents to change their lifestyle -- by taking shorter showers, replacing grass with drought-tolerant landscaping and buying water-efficient appliances -- is taking hold.

“My first response is almost disbelief,” said Mark Gold of UCLA's Institute of the Environment and Sustainability. “These results are beyond encouraging; they’re heartening. They make you realize that as a whole, people in urban areas are making the sacrifices necessary to get through this unprecedented drought.”