BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - In response to the state’s severe drought, Caltrans is launching a statewide educational campaign on the state’s highways, urging all Californians to conserve water.
Beginning Tuesday, California’s more than 700 electronic highway signs will display a water conservation message.
The message reads, "SERIOUS DROUGHT; HELP SAVE WATER."
As a large department responsible for 30,000 acres of irrigated landscaping, Caltrans is making dramatic reductions in its irrigation activities. Effective this month, Caltrans will take the following actions:
• Cut statewide irrigation activities by at least 50 percent.
• Delay all new landscaping projects in severely impacted areas until the next rainy season to preserve the water supply. Postpone all non-essential highway planting.
• Cease watering in areas of the state suffering from the most severe drought impacts.
• Expand its use of smart irrigation technologies, which turn off automatically when it rains. Such systems can reduce water usage by as much as 50-60 percent.
• Use recycled water for irrigation and other activities whenever possible.
• Forgo washing vehicles except when necessary for safety.
With California facing its driest year on record, Governor Brown declared a drought State of Emergency in January and directed state officials to take all necessary actions to prepare for water shortages.