PAWSD launches Catch a Wave and Save!

The Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District’s water conservation efforts surge forward today as the district launches its “Catch the Wave and Save!” project.

PAWSD has had a water conservation program in place since 1995, but today, based on a new Water Conservation Plan adopted late last year, the program formally makes a splash with an exciting combination of public education programs and resources. Over the next two months, the community is challenged to “Catch the Wave and Save!” by plunging into the following educational opportunities:

Today: Surf www.catchthewaveandsave.com for an ocean of information.

April 3: Southwestern Water Conservation District 27th annual Water Seminar (Doubletree Hotel, Durango): This year’s program, “A Common Thread,” will cover Western United States water issues. Speakers include Eric Kuhn of the Colorado River Water Conservation District, Kay Brothers of the Southern Nevada Water Authority and James Eklund of the Colorado State Attorney’s Office. Call the SWCD at 247-1302 for more information and to register.

April 20: Tune to KWUF 1400 AM at 8 a.m. PAWSD staff will discuss the water conservation plan, the Catch the Wave and Save campaign, and many tips for conserving water.

April 25: Celebrate Earth Day by attending one of the many Earth-Wise classes to be held from 9 a.m. to noon at the Pagosa Springs Community Center. PAWSD will host “Conservation and Water in the West” from 10 to 11 a.m. Visit www.sospagosa.org for a complete schedule.

May 2: Water conservation equals water security. Find out why at the first annual Safety Expo, taking place from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the high school parking lot.

May 3-9: National Drinking Water Week. A conservation display will be set up at the Sisson Library and a Catch the Wave and Save contest for kids will be held at the local schools. Winner receives a rafting trip for four. Call PAWSD at 731-2691 for information.

May 4: Film Showing of “The American Southwest — Are We Running Dry?” at the Abbey Theater in Durango, 6:30 p.m.

May 6: The 14th annual Children’s Water Festival will take place at 8 a.m. at Fort Lewis College in Durango. Visit www.waterinfo.org or call 247-1302 for information.

May 16-17: Visit the PAWSD booth at the 2009 Home and Garden Show, held at the county fairgrounds beginning at 10 a.m.

May 18: The winner of the Catch the Wave and Save raft trip contest will be announced on the PAWSD radio show at 8:05 am.

Additionally, throughout the next several months, PAWSD will be soliciting commercial businesses to participate in water audits. These free assessments by trained conservation professionals will provide suggested improvements for water savings, including substantial energy and dollar savings. Business owners interested in an audit can contact PAWSD staff at 946-9024.

There are multiple other ways for citizens to Catch the Wave and Save including the ongoing low flow toilet and washing machine rebate programs offered through PAWSD. As water conservation washes over the community, watch for tip cards, hotel door hangers, window decals and stickers at participating businesses that have Caught the Wave, signifying water conservation in practice.

PAWSD worked with Tracy Bouvette of Great Western Institute, Denise Rue-Pastin of Environmental Dimensions, and Chimera Communications, Inc. to put together this aggressive conservation messaging and outreach project. Working with the community, the district’s goal is to increase total water savings by 25 percent over the next 10 years.

PAWSD customers and the community can expect to receive a flood of information on water conservation over the next several months. PAWSD encourages everyone to Catch the Wave of water savings, so that our community may enjoy a future of decreased water dependency that will leave more water for the natural environment, reduce water and wastewater treatment costs, and prolong the need for new water infrastructure.

For information on the Catch the Wave and Save project, visit www.pawsd.org and www.catchthewaveandsave.com.