06-03-10 New Outdoor Water Rules Are In Effect
Earlier this week, Governor Sonny Perdue signed the Water Stewardship Act into law. For the green industry, and for our consumers, this means that we have a new set of outdoor water rules.
As we told you during the legislative session, these rules include a conservation piece that does not allow for outdoor irrigation between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. However, some forms of efficient irrigation and uses critical to the industry are exempt from this ban. A simple rule of thumb is this: your customers should avoid spray irrigation between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. If they are hand-watering, using drip irrigation or any of the other methods listed below, they can do so with no hourly restrictions.
For production, retail and landscape installation applications, the exemptions listed below give you the ability to conduct your business also without restrictions. As always, GGIA urges the industry to follow Best Management Practices and to WATER SMART.
One final note of caution; many water providers across the state have not officially adopted these new rules and EPD has not made an official rule change. However, state law trumps any local rules and this new schedule became the law of the land the minute it was signed. GGIA is here to assist you should you have any problems with your water provider concerning the new rules. Please let us know if you experience any difficulties.
Know When to Water!
New rules for outdoor water use went into effect on June 1, 2010. The green industry wants you to WATER SMART!
Outdoor landscape irrigation is now allowed 7 days per week between the hours of 4:00 p.m. and 10:00 a.m.
Outdoor irrigation is not allowed between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. with the exception of the following uses:
- Irrigation of personal food gardens
- Irrigation of new and replanted plant, seed, or turf in landscapes, golf courses, or sports turf fields during installation and for a period of 30 days
immediately following the date of in-stallation
- Drip irrigation or irrigation using soaker hoses
- Hand-watering with a hose with automatic cutoff or handheld container
- Irrigation of horticultural crops held for sale, resale, or installation
- Use of water withdrawn from private water wells or surface water
- Irrigation of athletic fields, golf courses, or public turf grass recreational areas
- Installation, maintenance, or calibration of irrigation systems
- Commercial agricultural operations
- Capture and reuse of cooling system condensate or storm water in compliance with applica-ble local ordinances and state guidelines
- Reuse of gray water in compliance with Code
Use of reclaimed waste water by a designated user from a system permitted by the Environmental Protection Division of the department to provide reclaimed waste water