The water situation in Texas is becoming dire. It's that simple. It hasn't rained substantially in over a year and climate models show that it is likely to stay dry, which means most cities will enter into next summer at a huge deficit. This drought has surpassed being an inconvenience and is threatening ways of life. Due to the strain this is placing on water resources, many cities are finally starting to respond. As we mentioned, Austin Water Utility will be implementing Stage II restrictions next week. Houston and Dallas have started watering restrictions as well, meanwhile cities like Corpus are doing nothing and Plainview and surrounding cities are just asking pretty please.
In the wake of an announcement that Lake Meredith, a reservoir built to serve Lubbock and surrounding communities, will be too dry to use in the future, cities such as Plainview and Lubbock are still just "encouraging" their citizens to conserve. Judging from the water running down Lubbock's streets and the puddles on Tech campus, it isn't working. A quick visit to the Lubbock water utility's website reveals no watering schedule or other limitations on water use. It is as if nothing we can do can make a difference, but nothing could be further from the truth.
Just look at El Paso or a host of other cities who have changed the trajectory of their usage by taking charge. Asking pretty please isn't enough. Cities need conservation programs that include education, incentive and rebate programs and regulations. It isn't just the right thing to do. It's their job.