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Auckland’s Rising Water Use Tips Into The Orange Zone

Auckland’s water use is increasing, prompting Watercare to remind Aucklanders to be waterwise this summer.

The current 7-day rolling average is 427 million litres a day, which is getting close to the December target of 437 million litres or less per day.

Head of servicing and consent Mark Bourne says an increase in water use was expected when restrictions were eased on 14 December, but consumption has continued to rise.

“We knew that people would want to wash their cars and water their gardens once they were able to use hand-held hoses with trigger nozzles, but water use has kept climbing and is now in what we consider the orange zone.

“We ask everyone to remember that we’re still recovering from a severe drought and we all need to keep saving water this summer. Keeping showers to four minutes or less is an easy way to reduce water use.”

Today, Auckland’s water supply dams are collectively 71.3 per cent full, compared with the historical average of 89.7 per cent for this time of year.

Watercare has worked to bring on an additional 30 million litres of water a day from the Waikato River and a bore in Pukekohe, but the dams are still very important water sources.

Work to bring the Hays Creek Dam in Papakura back to service will continue during Christmas and New Year, with the construction of a new treatment plant nearing completion. The plant is expected to be commissioned in January. This will initially provide up to 6 million litres per day, and an additional 6 million litres per day in the future.

Current residential water restrictions:

  • You cannot use a fixed irrigation system or sprinkler.
  • You can only use a hand-held hose or water blasting device if they are fitted with a trigger nozzle and not left unattended.

So, you can fill up a paddling pool with a hand-held hose and trigger nozzle, but you cannot have a sprinkler on for children to play in.

Indoor water-savings tips:

  • Keep showers to four minutes or less. This month we have partnered with Countdown to give away 30,000 shower timers to help Aucklanders keep their showers short.
  • Only run your washing machine and dishwasher when there are full loads.
  • Turn off the tap when brushing your teeth and shaving.
  • Recycle water where possible, such as pouring the water used to wash fruit and vegetables onto your plants.

Outdoor water-savings tips:

  • Limit outdoor water use. If you need to use your hose, make sure it is fitted with a trigger nozzle and don’t leave it unattended. Do not use sprinklers.
  • Water your garden early in the morning or late afternoon when temperatures have dropped.
  • Wash your car with a bucket. Only use the hose for a quick rinse at the end.

For more water-saving tips, go to waterforlife.org.nz.

© Scoop Media

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