All Features

Behind-the-scenes stories about regional water issues, projects, and people.

State Sen. Toni Atkins receives CMUA Safe Drinking Water Champion Award January 27, 2020 in Sacramento

Atkins Receives Safe Drinking Water Champion Award

California State Senate President pro Tem Toni Atkins of San Diego on Monday received the 2019 Safe Drinking Water Champion Award from the California Municipal Utilities Association in Sacramento. “The award recognizes Senator Atkins’ leadership to work collaboratively with her colleagues in the Senate, Assembly and Governor’s office in securing funding for communities that do […]

Set yourself up for landscaping success by building the best foundation in your soil structure. Photo: walkersalmanac/Pixabay

Take a Test to Determine Your Soil Type

If you put a shovel into the ground in San Diego County, you are likely to encounter the region’s impermeable soil structure. Impermeable soils are defined by poor infiltration areas. This means water doesn’t flow through the soil to replenish groundwater, because the soil is too dense. Having impermeable soil also means water does not […]

Laboratory Superintendent Nicki Branch (far left) and employees of the Escondido Water Quality Lab, one of only two certified labs in California under new standards. Photo: City of Escondido

Escondido Water Quality Lab Leads By Example

California’s 600 certified water quality testing labs will face strict new accreditation standards in the near future. While final hearings still need to take place on the draft regulations before adoption, the City of Escondido Water Quality Lab isn’t waiting. Escondido is working now to adopt the anticipated regulations. Escondido is one of only two […]

2020 Women in Water - San Diego County Water Authority - Tyrese Powell-Slotterbeck

Women In Water Conference Showcases Career Opportunities

More than 200 people explored career opportunities in the water and wastewater industry at the third annual Women in Water Symposium Thursday at Cuyamaca College. The conference’s goal this year was to create a community of people with the interest and aptitude to take on what were previously considered non-traditional careers. Speakers at the conference […]

Award-Winning Student Artwork Inspires 2020 Water Conservation Calendar

The City of San Diego’s colorful 2020 Water Conservation Calendar features winning artwork from 19 students throughout San Diego. This is the 20th year the calendar has been produced by the City’s Public Utilities Department. The theme was water conservation. “The children’s artwork in these calendars is fantastic, and helps present the importance of reducing […]

Rocks and small boulders are both aesthetically pleasing and useful in your landscape. Photo: Otay Water District

Contour Your Landscape

When planning your landscape, look first at the terrain you’re working with. You can use the contours of your existing land – depressions and slopes – for guidance when planning your landscape grading. If your yard is flat, you’ll need to move soil and features around to create more rain-holding contour areas. A soil percolation […]

Otay Water District Reclamation Plant Operator Tyrese Powell is among the women pursuing career opportunities in the water and wastewater industry. Photo: Water Authority

Workforce Diversity Focus of ‘Women in Water’ Conference

Career opportunities for women in the water and wastewater industry at every level are the focus of the third annual Women in Water Symposium January 16 at Cuyamaca College. Vanessa Murrell, grant manager for the Center for Water Studies at Cuyamaca College, said the conference’s goal in its third year is to create a community […]

Calendar poster contest winner Maya Santana, a fifth grader from Wolf Canyon Elementary School in the Otay Water District, displays her winning artwork. Photo: Otay Water District Water Is Life Calendar

Student Artists Featured in 2020 ‘Water Is Life’ Calendar

Five talented San Diego County student artists from four elementary schools were among 36 Southern California students whose artwork will appear in the 2020 “Water Is Life” calendar. The five artists represent regional water agencies including Helix Water District, Otay Water District, Padre Dam MWD, and Sweetwater Authority. Produced by the Metropolitan Water District of […]

Top 3 WNN stories of 2019 - Water News Network

Water News Network Top 3 Stories of 2019

The Water News Network’s top three stories of 2019 reflect the San Diego region’s interest in water conservation, sustainable landscaping, and successful efforts to diversify water supply sources. Conservation Colorful art created by elementary school students communicated the importance of saving water. This was the most viewed story of 2019.   Creative Kids Educate Region About […]

Plants on the Nifty 50 list have been selected because they are attractive, available in retail nurseries, non-invasive and thrive in San Diego County. Photo: Capri23auto/Pixabay

The Nifty 50: Best Plants for WaterSmart Landscapes

Are you looking for new plants or trees to upgrade your WaterSmart landscape? Check out the Nifty 50. These 50 plants and trees thrive in San Diego County’s arid climate, and the rainy fall and winter are a perfect time to introduce them into your landscape. They are attractive, non-invasive, easy to maintain and drought-tolerant. […]

WaterSmart Contractor Incentive Program

New Rebates For WaterSmart Irrigation Devices in San Diego County

A new rebate program for irrigation devices is available to qualified landscape contractors in San Diego County. The WaterSmart Contractor Incentive Program, or WSCIP, is designed to help commercial, public and agricultural property owners improve water-use efficiency in large landscapes, through rebates for irrigation hardware upgrades. School districts, universities, and other organizations are also eligible. […]

Trees can be a great natural way to slow down rainwater before it reaches your soil. Photo: Thilo Becker/Pixabay

Catching and Storing Rainwater for Your Landscape

During the rainy fall and winter seasons in Southern California, catching and storing rainwater is beneficial for cutting down on irrigation costs. It can also be stored for later use through the rest of the year. Know the path rainwater will take If there are rain gutters on your house, water will flow into downspouts, […]

Valley Center MWD Cool Valley Reservoir

Valley Center Reservoir Project ‘Exceptional’

The Valley Center Municipal Water District has been advised by the California State Water Resources Control Board that its Cool Valley Reservoir Cover Replacement Project was recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency’s new AQUARIUS Program as an “Exceptional Project,” among only 10 identified as such nationwide. Each year, EPA’s Aquarius Program recognizes one Drinking Water […]

RE:BORDER 2019 Jim Madaffer - The Water We Share

Cross-Border Water Issues Need Cross-Border Solutions

Regional collaboration and partnerships are needed to solve cross-border water issues, according to San Diego County Water Authority Board Chair Jim Madaffer. “The Water Authority is exploring innovative solutions to increase water supply reliability for the San Diego region, but also Baja California and the Southwest,” said Madaffer during today’s opening ceremony of RE:BORDER 2019 […]

Even in our arid climate, the first rainfall can add up to a lot of water runoff - save as much as possible in your landscape. Photo: Denis Doukhan/Pixabay

Prepare Your Landscape for the First Rain

After a dry spell, the first rainfall is the most important water to capture for your landscape. This is called the “first flush.” In arid regions like San Diego County, this happens every year because there is a long stretch of dry weather in between rainy seasons. Why is the first rainfall so important? It […]