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Mandatory Drought Restrictions

California is in the third year of a statewide drought, and Vallecitos Water District recently issued a Level 2 Drought Alert. Current irrigation on campus meets the requirements of this alert. In further support of water conservation, CSUSM also has implemented many conservation measures to increase our water efficiency, including low-flow faucets, low-flow toilets and waterless urinals in all buildings, computerized irrigation controllers, and drought-tolerant plants around campus.

While the campus is doing everything we can to conserve water, we strongly encourage the campus community to make every attempt to also conserve water; not only while on campus but also at home. Here are some tips to conserve water at home:


  • Repair irrigation line leaks and broken sprinkler heads. 
  • Adjust sprinklers to prevent overspray and runoff. 
  • Don’t overwater.
  • Use a hose nozzle that shuts off when you release the handle. 
  • Water between 6 p.m. and 10 a.m. to reduce evaporation and interference from wind. 
  • Apply a 3-inch layer of mulch over planting areas, keeping the mulch 6 inches away from plant stems and tree trunks to avoid mildew. 
  • Install drip irrigation systems for trees, shrubs and flowers to get water to plant roots more efficiently. 
  • Upgrade to a “smart” irrigation controller that automatically adjusts watering times for hotter weather and stops watering when it rains. Rebates may even be available for this type of product depending on your location.
  • Replace your lawn with native or Mediterranean plants, trees, shrubs or ground cover. These plantings provide greenery for much of the year and demand less water. 


  • Turn off the faucet while brushing teeth, shaving or scrubbing dishes.  
  • Trim a minute or two off your shower and collect water in a bucket for plants while the water is warming up. 
  • Fill the bathtub halfway for bathing. 
  • Fix leaky toilets and faucets. 
  • Install aerators with flow restrictors on kitchen and bathroom faucets. 
  • Wash only full loads of laundry. 
  • Run the dishwasher only when full.  Program dishwashers to skip the pre-rinse and extra-rinse cycles. 
  • Fill your sink or basin when washing and rinsing dishes. 
  • When cooking, peel and clean vegetables in a large bowl of water instead of under running water. Place food waste in the compost instead of the garbage disposal.

For more conservation ideas and drought-related information, please visit the following websites:

Vallecitos Water District
San Diego County Water Authority
California Drought Information System
California Department of Water Systems