Los Angeles continues to lead the nation in water conservation. In 2016, new measures were incorporated into the City’s Green Building Code mandating water- saving technologies in new buildings, landscapes and additions or alterations costing more than $200,000. Responding to Mayor Garcetti’s Executive Directive No. 5 (“Emergency Drought Response”), the Department of Building and Safety partnered with stakeholders to draft the most stringent water conservation measures in any big city in the U.S., which went into effect in June.
The new rules require a 20 percent reduction in indoor water use through the installation of more efficient plumbing fixtures and fittings. They also set water budgets for landscape irrigation to be consistent with statewide standards. New multi-family dwellings and commercial buildings larger than 50,000 square feet must include sub-meters, giving occupants an incentive to save water. Buildings must also be greywater-ready and use recycled water where available.