The cities of Plano and Richardson are asking residents and businesses to conserve water.
On Friday, both cities initiated Stage 1 of its Drought Contingency Plan, asking for voluntary water conservation of two percent.
“We’re asking our residents to do what they can now to help prevent, or eliminate, mandatory restrictions in the future,” said Jerry Ortega, Richardson’s Director of Public Services. “If we get enough rain and can conserve enough water during these summer months, then we will hopefully be able to avert mandatory restrictions later this year. That is our goal and we trust all residents will be ‘water-smart’ next time we all turn on our taps.”
The request is in response to the North Texas Municipal Water District's initiation of its Stage 1 Water Conservation and Drought Contingency and Water Emergency Response Plan, effective April 19.
The plan was put in place due to a plethora of zebra mussels found in Lake Texoma that are attaching themselves to pipes and other equipment used to pump water. The mussels bring increased operating and maintenance costs, so the until the mussels are removed the plant is offline and not sending water to North Texas cities -- hence the conservation plan.
The infestation of zebra mussels has resulted in a loss of 22.5 percent of the NTMWD’s total raw water supply.
While cities like Plano, Richardson and Frisco have all asked residents and business to use water wisely, it's a message that should be spread across the entire Metroplex -- as the NTMWD's Stage 1 conservation plan impacts everyone in North Texas.
Two percent isn't much, just try not to leave your shower, faucet or hoses running unattended and you're probably close to doing your part.