In this issue: 
  • Fire stations embrace water savings
  • Toilet rebate program expands
  • The advantages of mulch
  • Time to think about rainwater harvesting
  • Cover story stardom 

Water tanks get chiefs all fired up for conservation, thanks to major grant
Thanks to a grant totaling more than $80,000 from The Cochise Water Project, five area fire stations have jumped into the water conservation arena.

The money was used to purchase 5,000 gallon rainwater harvesting tanks, which will result in around 100,000 gallons being collected on an annual basis.

The project will allow firefighters at the three Sierra Vista and two Fry stations to wash and clean their trucks and other equipment using rainwater.

Fry Fire Chief Bill Miller told the Sierra Vista Herald, "Rainwater, when collected off roof lines, doesn't create water spots because it doesn't have calcium in it," making it not only an environmentally sensible alternative, but an aesthetic one.

The tanks at the two Fry stations at Apache Avenue and Arabian Street are already in place, while the systems for the Sierra Vista sites are expected to be installed by Oasis Rainwater Harvesting and Southwest Desert Images by the end of February.

Toilet program to focus on Bisbee and Tombstone

It's been a huge success in Sierra Vista, so now the toilet program is set to expand into other communities within the sub-watershed.

The Cochise Water Project is looking for householders in Bisbee and Tombstone who would like to swap out their old toilets for low-flush models.

"There are a lot of older homes in these areas, which means there are probably a lot of high flow toilets," said TCWP Executive Director Pat Call. "We'd love to hear from residents in these historic communities and let them know how they can save both water and money by utilizing our rebate program."

To find out more email Administrative Director Tim Cervantes or call (520) 732-2014.
There's much to know about mulch 

  • Mulches cover and cool the soil. During the summer, cooler soil temperatures help to improve root growth.
  • Water evaporates more slowly from soil surfaces that are covered and cool. Mulches help to reduce water use by reducing evaporation so more water stays in the soil for plants to use. They also help to reduce salt build-up in the soil.
  • Mulches help water to penetrate the soil more effectively, reducing runoff from planted areas. Reduced runoff keeps water where plants can use it.
  • Mulches help to keep the sunlight from reaching weed seedlings in the soil. Less sunlight means less weed growth. Weeds use water that would otherwise be available for landscape plants. Fewer weeds means more water for your plants and less maintenance time for you.


Start thinking now about making a smart choice for your home

Now is the time to start thinking about rainwater harvesting projects at your home.

Take advantage of winter rains to help nourish your Spring garden. You'll also be ready for the monsoon rains and the benefits of watering your landscapes with captured water.

Not sure where to start? The Cochise Water Project can help you with that. Visit our website or call (520) 732-2014 for information.

Delivering the conservation message

Hopefully you caught the cover story in January's edition of SSVEC's Currents magazine, which focussed on The Cochise Water Project and water conservation in general.

We are delighted that the message regarding saving water is reaching so many local people. The cover photograph demonstrates the success of our ongoing toilet rebate program, which has so far seen more than 1,500 high-flow toilets replaced in the Sierra Vista sub-watershed.

If you didn't see this copy of Currents, you can view it here.

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