Southern Californians looking for ways to save water and money are getting a helping hand from the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California just as summer temperatures are heating up.
Metropolitan today launched its new Landscape Transformation Program, offering residents and businesses $1 for every square foot of thirsty grass they replace with more water-efficient native plants and irrigation systems.
The district also kicked off its summer advertising and outreach campaign today. The multi-million dollar “365” campaign encourages Southern Californians to conserve water every day and reminds them to take advantage of Metropolitan’s rebate programs—including cash back for water-saving washing machines, toilets, sprinkler nozzles, smart irrigation systems and other devices and appliances, in addition to transforming their landscapes.
“Southern Californians have learned the value of saving water. They understand water is a limited resource, especially after the recent drought. But sometimes we all need a little nudge and a little extra incentive to keep using water as efficiently as possible. Our programs and campaign offer that incentive,” said Metropolitan General Manager Jeffrey Kightlinger.
Details about the new landscape program and all of Metropolitan’s rebates are available at Metropolitan’s online water-savings portal bewaterwise.com. The mobile-friendly site offers tips, educational materials, how-to videos and classes on how to be more water efficient.
Metropolitan helped change the way Southern Californians see their yards and open spaces with its popular turf removal program in 2014-2015. That program, the largest anywhere in the country, spurred the replacement of 160 million square feet of grass during one of California’s worst droughts. This time around, instead of a short-term urgent drought response, Metropolitan’s new Landscape Transformation Program will be ongoing, with up to $50 million in applications accepted a year. Some Metropolitan member agencies may provide additional incentives on top of the $1 a square foot.
“Since the turf rebate program ended three years ago, residents have been asking for its return. We used lessons learned from the earlier program in developing the new Landscape Transformation Program. We’ve incorporated new requirements to drive a sustainable approach, encouraging people to use native plants. And we’ve made it a regular part of our long-term commitment to help Southern Californians use less water,” said Bill McDonnell, Metropolitan’s water use efficiency manager.
Another key part of that commitment is Metropolitan’s new 365 campaign which builds on Metropolitan’s H2Love conservation campaign. With the tagline, “Every day is a chance to save water. And money,” the campaign not only encourages viewers to conserve, it tells them how to get financial help doing so with rebates available at bewaterwise.com.
Southern Californians will see the campaign everywhere—from a television commercial by an award-winning director to online and social media ads to billboards and even small posters in local convenience stores and on lunch trucks. And it will be multilingual, translated into Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese and Filipino.
In addition, the campaign finds creative ways to reach diverse audiences, including using on-air personalities on Spanish-language channels, a Chinese-language game show and special events, such as Viva Los Dodgers.