In this issue: 
  • Are you wasting water?
  • El Nino rainwater harvesting
  • Community weather stations
  • Save at Thanksgiving
Don't flush away your dollars 
Did you know if you swapped your toilet for a low-flush model you would save an average of 10,000 gallons of water every year? To put that into perspective, the average swimming pool contains about 15,000 to 20,000 gallons of water. Do you have a toilet that's leaking? That continually running water is probably adding up to 200 gallons of wasted water PER DAY.

It's really simple, however, to make a small change which will have a big impact on your water usage. By installing a toilet that only uses .8 of a gallon per flush, you will not only do your part to help maintain the local aquifer, you may also see a lower monthly water bill.

The Cochise Water Project has a rebate program designed to help local residents change out their old toilets at an affordable price. Call us at (520) 732-2014 to find out how you can have a new, low-flush toilet in your home, fully installed, for just $95. These comfort height, elongated bowl toilets will save you water and money in the long term. But hurry - we have a limited quantity available.

Take advantage of the El Nino rains

With the strongest El Nino in 18 years being predicted for this winter, it's likely that we'll be seeing more rain than normal in the coming months. Which means this will provide a great opportunity to harvest rainwater for your spring landscapes, when the drier weather moves in.

If you are not ready to commit to a larger rainwater harvesting system, The Cochise Water Project has a number of smaller, low-cost barrels to get you started. Our 50-gallon barrels easily connect to the downspouts of your gutters and the water can be used for your landscaping, as well as indoor plants. 

You can buy one barrel for just $75 or two for $100 - these barrels usually retail for around $95 or more each. Don't waste another drop of rainwater - call us at (520) 732-2014 to secure your barrels while supplies last.

Get smart with your irrigation
The Cochise Water Project is in the process of installing 12 weather stations in and around the greater Sierra Vista area. What does this mean for local residents? In 2016 we are planning to launch a new program offering smart irrigation controllers to home owners. Your controller will be fed information from the nearest weather station, which will let it know when to water your landscaping.

Weather stations have so far been installed by administrative director Tim Cervantes, pictured above, at Cochise College, Mountain View Golf Course, next to Stan Greer Millworks, and on the corner of Hereford and Palominas Roads. Right now, you can go to to see real time data being provided by each of these stations, including temperature, humidity, rainfall, and wind speeds. Just scroll to the bottom of the home page.

Look out for more information about the smart irrigation controller program in the New Year. 

Tips for Thanksgiving savings

Thanksgiving is just a week away, which means more time spent in the kitchen to cook up the celebratory feast. Here are some tips on how you can save water during the biggest holiday of the year:
  • Don't run the tap when washing dishes in the sink. Instead, plug the drain and fill the sink with soapy water or use a plastic wash basin. This will significantly reduce the amount of water you use, according to WaterSense, a conservation program run by the Environmental Protection Agency.
  • According to Energy Star, dishwashers built before 1994 can use as much as 10 gallons of water per cycle. Even if you have a newer model, make sure it's fully loaded each time you run it. This reduces the number of loads.
  • Save yourself some elbow grease by only scraping the food scraps off the plate and letting the dishwasher do the rest. Don't scrub them clean first. And avoid using the "rinse hold" on your machine for just a few soiled dishes. It uses 3-7 gallons of hot water each time.
  • Instead of letting the faucet run until the water is cool, fill a pitcher with water and store it in the refrigerator. When you serve dinner, put an ice-cold pitcher of water on the table.
  • Instead of running hot water over frozen foods, thaw them out in the microwave or overnight in the refrigerator.
  • Garbage disposals use water to break down the food inside. If you can accommodate one, consider adding food wastes to a compost pile instead of tossing them down the garbage disposal.

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