San Diego Zoo will promote water conservation

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – San Diego Zoo Global and the San Diego County Water Authority Thursday announced a plan to promote water conservation to guests at the zoo and Safari Park.

The initiative will include new signs that emphasize water-smart practices; water conservation reminders during guided bus and tram tours and social media posts that highlight California’s water supply challenges while encouraging guests to conserve water.

The messages will include real-world examples of water conservation efforts such as Safari Park gardens that feature native species and low-water-use plants.

Officials with the two organizations estimate the messages will be seen by around 4.5 million guests combined who enter the theme parks.

Mark Weston, chairman of the Water Authority’s board of directors, lauded the zoo’s conservation leadership in two areas.

“The first is its commitment to conserve and recycle water at its facilities long before the current drought began,” Weston said. “The second is its willingness to use its considerable influence to inspire the rest of us to conserve wherever we can. That’s the kind of leadership and engagement it will take across our region and state to weather this drought while preserving the economy and quality of life that we value in San Diego County.”

San Diego and California as a whole has gone through three straight dry years and faced higher than normal temperatures in 2014. With reservoirs drawn down to accommodate demand, local water agencies have implemented mandatory water use restrictions in case next year is dry, too.

“As a conservation organization, San Diego Zoo Global has always looked at ways to ensure that it is conserving natural resources like water in its daily operations,” said Doug Myers, its president and CEO. “Although we use water for cleaning and as an integral part of our animal habitats, we also recycle water and reduce water use wherever possible.”

According to San Diego Zoo Global, more than 16 million gallons of water are recycled annually and used to support its horticultural collection at the zoo and Safari Park. The zoo also uses water-saving technologies such as low-flow toilets, rainwater reclamation gutters and direct site drip-lines for irrigation.

Categories: KUSI