SAN FRANCISCO—The Valley of the Moon Water District has asked all well owners and users to reduce water use by 20% due to extreme drought in 2021. The two lakes that feed into the Russian River system are at historic lows after two consecutive dry years.

District and City water customers have already been asked to reduce water use by 15-20%. The District and City are asking groundwater well owners to do the same. The groundwater that is being stored in the aquifer currently will be used for drinking, sanitation, and firefighting next year if the drought persists, according to a VOMWD press release.

“In past droughts, it was common to see ‘private well’ signs on green lawns. This year we hope that users will follow the same water reductions as District Water customers and reduce non-essential water use,” said VOMWD District General Manager, Matt Fullner in a release.

Lake Sonoma and Lake Mendocino are at historic lows. These lakes feed into the Russian River system and supply most of the drinking, sanitization, and firefighting water in Sonoma County, according to a VOMWD press release.

“There has been a lot of important discussion and focus on reservoir levels in this current drought, but aquifer storage in the Sonoma Valley Basin is being impacted due to the lack of aquifer recharge after two historically dry years in a row,” said Fullner.

The Sonoma-Marin Saving Water Partnership has launched a public outreach campaign to encourage water conservation in the North Bay. The campaign adopted the slogan “Drought is here. Save Water” to support its message.

The Sonoma-Marin Saving Water Partnership webpage offers tips on how to save water indoors and outdoors. Turning off water when shaving or rinsing dishes, checking toilets for leaks, watering lawns and plants between 12 a.m. and 6 a.m., and inspecting sprinkler systems monthly can help preserve water, according to the webpage.