S. Calif. residents encouraged to get inside scoop on precious resource - water

While Southern California's population and economy continue to grow, its water supply does not. Sponsored by the Long Beach Water Department, the Aquarium of the Pacific's Aquatic Academy, in Long Beach, is presenting its annual educational course "California and Water" on four consecutive Thursday evenings, 6:30 p.m.-9:00 p.m. from March 9 through March 30...

LONG BEACH, CA, Jan. 18, 2006 -- While Southern California's population and economy continue to grow, its water supply does not. In the next 15 years, the region is expected to gain as many as 2.6 million new residents. Today, in Southern California, the primary sources of water come from outside our region (the Colorado River and State Water Protect/California Aqueduct). The public is invited to learn more about this vital resource and its future sustainability from leading industry experts through the Aquarium of the Pacific's "California and Water" course starting March 9.

Sponsored by the Long Beach Water Department, the Aquarium of the Pacific's Aquatic Academy, in Long Beach, is presenting its annual educational course "California and Water" on four consecutive Thursday evenings, 6:30 p.m.-9:00 p.m. from March 9 through March 30.

Presented by experts, this course will explore one of the most current and pressing issues facing California -- water. The classes will explore California's history and context of water issues with a focus on Southern California and will include a detailed discussion on the plans for managing our water needs over the next 25 years. The environmental issues and natural demands for water in our region will also be discussed. The course will conclude with an exciting panel discussion on what individuals and communities can do to reduce water use, including home and office water conservation techniques and native planting as well as other landscaping ideas. Participants will leave the course with practical tools and ideas to become more efficient in their water use and with a greater knowledge on an issue that is critical to all of us that live in Southern California.

Continuing Education Units (CEU) will be available through Long Beach City College. The course will include classroom materials for teachers.

The cost is $45 for the public and $35 for Aquarium members. CEU credit is available for an additional $10. Parking is included.

The Aquarium of the Pacific (www.aquariumofpacific.org), a nonprofit institution, celebrates our planet's largest and most diverse body of water: the Pacific Ocean. Home to more than 12,500 animals, the aquarium explores the waters of Southern California and Baja and the Northern and Tropical Pacific. It features the Lorikeet Forest aviary; its interactive Shark Lagoon; the 2005 MUSE Award-winning kiosk exhibit Whales: Voices in the Sea; and the new Whales: A Journey with Giants program. It was rated #2 Los Angeles area Family Destination in the 2004 Zagat U.S. Family Travel Guide.

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