LADWP marks millionth low-flush toilet installation

L.A. Department of Water and Power's Ultra-Low Flush Toilet initiative, achieved a critical milestone today with the installation of the 1 millionth ULF toilet.

LOS ANGELES, Calif., Nov. 5, 2001 — One of the nation's most successful water conservation programs, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power's Ultra-Low Flush Toilet initiative, achieved a critical milestone today with the installation of the 1 millionth ULF toilet.

LADWP officials, Los Angeles City Councilwoman Ruth Galanter and several community organizations gathered at the John Ferraro Building in downtown Los Angeles to celebrate the continuing achievements of the 10-year-old program that saves the equivalent of enough water annually to fill the Rose Bowl more than 100 times.

Officials also announced today that the ULF program will be expanded in Los Angeles to aggressively encourage owners of commercial and industrial businesses to join in the conservation effort and take advantage of incentives that greatly reduce — or eliminate — the cost of installing the water-saving toilets.

"The Department of Water and Power and the City of Los Angeles are showing California and the nation that water conservation works, and I am very proud to have authored the ordinance implementing the low flow toilet and other water conservation programs," said Galanter. "We know conservation works because our population has increased by slightly more than 35 percent (or nearly 1 million people) since 1970, but current water use has grown by only 7 percent. Per person usage has actually been reduced by 15 percent."

"LADWP is dedicated to sustaining Los Angeles' future water supply by offering incentives to our customers to use water as efficiently as possible," said David H. Wiggs, general manager, LADWP. "Though we've reached our millionth ULF installation, we believe that there is much more work to be done. Our ultimate goal is to ensure that all LADWP customers have ultra-low-flush toilets and other fixtures that conserve water, our most precious natural resource."

The Department's ULF Toilet replacement program currently includes a toilet rebate that provides $100 for each toilet replaced in a single-family residence, $75 for each toilet replaced in a multifamily (apartment) building, and $120 for each toilet replaced in a commercial, industrial and institutional facility. Through a companion program, LADWP works with local community-based organizations (CBOs) to distribute free ULF toilets to residential customers. CBOs are compensated for each ULF toilet distributed to residents for which an old toilet is returned.

"This program not only contributes to saving water, but it puts people to work," said Gerald Gewe, assistant general manager, Water System. "Our community organizations play a significant role in the success of the ULF replacement program. Our partnerships help us put programs directly into the community, where our customers live and work, and the community groups are empowered to create job opportunities and implement job training programs for members of their organizations."

In the past decade, the number of toilets replaced in Los Angeles represents nearly half of the total number replaced through similar programs implemented in other cities throughout California.

As the program moves forward, LADWP is conducting outreach through business and industrial trade associations, and directly to large retail chains and businesses. In the same manner it reaches out to residential customers, the LADWP will continue to work with CBOs to contact small- and mid-size business owners in its service area, officials said.

During ceremonies today, LADWP officials presented the Los Angeles-based Asian American Drug Abuse Program (AADAP), one of the program's current CBO partners, with a commemorative, hand-painted, leopard motif toilet as the ceremonial 1 millionth ULF toilet. The toilet will be installed in one of the facilities operated by AADAP that provides social services to the local community.

Designed by artist Xenia Zampolli of Northern California, the toilet was donated by Honeywell DMC Services Inc., the ULF toilet replacement program administrator.

"Because we understand the importance of conserving water, AADAP was excited to be selected the millionth ULF toilet recipient," said Mike Watanabe, the organization's executive director. "Through successful LADWP programs such as this, we're able to not only assist with program implementation, but actually contribute to the city's conservation savings, through retrofitted toilets and other water saving practices."

In addition to the ULF toilet replacement program, the LADWP provides free replacement low-flow showerheads, rebates for the purchase of high efficiency clothes washing machines by residential and commercial customers, as well as incentives for custom water conservation projects by larger business users.

The LADWP serves more than 3.8 million people in Los Angeles and was established almost 100 years ago to provide water and electric needs to the city's businesses and residents. For information, call 1-800-DIAL-DWP, or log on to www.ladwp.com.

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