Have you looked at your home water bill lately? Did it make sense to you? If so, your local utility might use WaterSmart Software that helps peer-benchmark residential water use to encourage conservation, and helps utilities like East Bay Municipal Utility District, which serves Oakland and the surrounding area, better engage with their residential customers.
Many states, especially California, needs to finance a new decentralized water efficiency industry the same way we created a now-thriving clean energy industry. There are many public financing mechanisms to spur water efficiency that need to be utilized.
Water shortages like the one afflicting California have created a business opportunity for WaterSmart Software, a company that provides data to water utilities to help them and their customers better conserve water.
As part of our Drought Watch series, we’ll find out about some of the most promising innovations for saving, reusing and maximizing what is becoming California’s most precious resource.
Though the WaterSmart interface seems simple, the calculations behind it are not. Two households of the same size can’t be expected to use the same amount of water if one has townhouse without a yard and the other a suburban spread on half an acre.
And what about norms? Innovative companies and public utilities are already on the case. A San Francisco-based firm, WaterSmart Software, sends mailers that allow homeowners to compare their water use to their neighbors’.
“California has substantial challenges ahead obviously,” said Jeff Lipton, director of marketing at WaterSmart Software, which sells computer-based solutions that crunch data on water uses. “It’s really going to be a portfolio approach helping solve this.”