Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Winter Lawns in Phoenix

The Arizona Republic will be publishing an excellent letter (our Legal Services Department (LSD) has cautioned us not to reveal the author's name), the text of which reads as follows:

"Bermuda grass goes dormant from late Fall to late Spring and requires no water during that time. Over-seeding with rye grass (aka winter lawns) requires an enormous amount of water. Electric utilities (such as SRP and APS) have higher rates during on-peak times and lower rates during off-peak times. But the City of Phoenix has no such scaling approach. Instead, it charges the same amount per gallon of water no matter when it is used or for what it is used. If Phoenix would recognize that we live in a desert, it would outlaw winter lawns. Barring that, there could be untold savings in water and a substantial increase in City revenues if Phoenix scaled its water charges such that customers who opted for winter lawns would pay at an “on-peak” rate, i.e., they would pay a premium on gallons-per-month used over what they use for drinking and other vital services."

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