Erie's Progress Toward Water Efficiency
The Town of Erie has a long history of commitment to water efficiency and conservation practices. As the Town’s population and the current and future effects of climate change increase, the competition and cost for water supplies will increase as well. This is why water efficiency is a critical component to maintaining a sustainable and thriving community.
Achieve 10% Water Savings in 10 Years: "10 in 10"
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The Town of Erie’s 2021 Water Efficiency Plan (Plan) established the “10 in 10” initiative – achieve 10% water savings in the next 10 years. This water savings goal applies to first-use water, meaning first-time use of treated water and untreated ditch and reservoir water that is used for potable and non-potable purposes. Essentially, the target sets the water usage cap at 115 gallons per capita per day (gpcd) based on population demand projections presented in the Plan. Erie will evaluate progress toward this goal by comparing annual per capita water usage each year relative to the 115 gdpd targets. (click on the chart image below to see an expanded version)
Smart Water Meters: Erie began replacing old water meters (10 to 12 years old) with remote-read meters (AMR) in 2005. In 2016, the Town replaced these AMR meters with smart meters that enable two-way communication between the customer and the Town. Customers who have had their meters replaced are able to download the smartphone app, EyeOnWater, to monitor their daily water use, and the Town is able to monitor water usage and notify the customer if a water leak is detected. Over 60% of Erie’s meters have been upgraded to smart water meters as of spring 2021. All meters are expected to be outfitted within the next 3 to 4 years, and all newly built residential housing have the smart meter installed automatically.
Tiered Billing Rates: In 2021, the residential water usage billing system was modified to a tiered system that incentivizes customers to be more efficient with their water use. Water rate increases allow the Town to acquire new water and maintain essential water treatment infrastructure. Tiered increases in water rates are intention to signal the cost of overusing one's water allotment and also careful to cause as little economic burden to customers and residents as possible. The Town acknowledges and values economic equity, so this system ensures low-income households are not carrying an unjust financial burden in the water billing system. Watch this video to learn more about how to read your water bill.
Water Efficiency Rebates: The Town also has a “menu of rebate options” that introduces and incentivizes Erie water customers to purchase and install more water-efficient appliances and fixtures. The Town currently offers rebates on clothes washers, toilets, showerheads, rain barrels, high-efficiency sprinkler nozzles, drip irrigation equipment, smart control clocks and automated rain sensor installations, and much more. These rebate options could potentially save residents hundreds of dollars upfront, and water-efficient appliances will reduce water bills for years to come.
Water Conservation Programs: Click here for more information about how you can sign up for a FREE water-saving sprinkler consultation!
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