Thursday, August 22, 2013

Water Wasters #1

I've been kicking around the idea of a new blog series for a while now, somewhat hampered by not driving often anymore and even more hampered by not typically having my camera with me when I am driving.  Last night, however, presented me with the perfect opportunity and I decided to go ahead and run with it.

Let me set the scene for you.  We're in a drought.  It's not as much in the news as last year, but it's still there.  Right now, we are in Stage II water restrictions, with Stage III right around the corner.  There are limits on when you are allowed to water using automatic sprinklers, and for how long.  There is a blanket city ordinance against allowing the water to run down the street.  More importantly, over-watering is a dick move and a waste of money as much as water.  And because if you show your ass publicly I should get to mock you, I'm going to document as many incidences of water waste as I can manage. 

Yesterday, for the first time in a couple of weeks at least, we had rain.  It was cloudy most of the day, and then at around 6:40 in the evening, it started raining.  Not heavily, but steadily.  We picked up Erik a little after 7 and went to the Longhorn CafĂ© at City Base and ate dinner, and after we left we stopped at the HEB across the street at Goliad and Military.  These photos are from their parking lot.  It was kind of drizzling when I made Erik stop and take this picture:

This is HEB watering their grass.  In the rain.  The usual excuse when you mention to someone that they might ought to not water grass while it's raining is "We can't turn it off; it's on a timer."  The first part of this statement is fairly obviously bullshit.  There's always a power switch

I took this second one about ten minutes later, on the way out.  This is still the HEB parking lot:

Take a look at how close that sprinkler head is to the curb.  It's only mostly spraying on the grass.  There is a small river of runoff visible; it's what looks like a puddle.  That's not from the rain.  There just wasn't enough of a storm to make puddles, let alone little rivers running along the gutters; everywhere else the pavement is just damp.

HEB was watering enough during a rain shower to create runoff.  That's not just wasting water, that's WASTING it.  And what the hell is the point?  Stupidity?  Carelessness?  A big fuck you to the fact that we have a single water source and two million people in a drought-prone area? 


peter said...

Used to drive me nuts when I was going to DSU and the sprinklers would be on in the rain. It can't be that hard to turn them off. And they have sprinklers right next to the curb. Sometimes I'd get water in my car if I left the windows open part way. They don't rotate 360 degrees but it seemed to be closer to 200 rather than 180 since parking there would definitely get your car wet. It may be that the sprinklers weren't set at quite the right angle, however. At any rate, watering the grass when it's raining is annoying.
Conversely, you yourself said there wasn't enough rain to create puddles so more than likely the sprinklers were needed anyway. Of course the parking lot didn't need the water.

Dave said...

I'm sure they have a corporate excuse involving water credits (do they have those, like carbon offsets?) or some fancy regurgitated water system. Either way, if it creates a puddle in the street, that is plain dicky.

Ruth said...

There are moisture sensors, that can be added to sprinkler systems, that check for rain, or even recent rain, and temporarily interupt the sprinkling schedule for sprinkler systems.....