Lawns: We Need to Ban Them in Southern California


TOUGH TALK-For years, I've maintained that education, not government-sanctioned coercion, would be the best way to help us live within our water means. I don't believe that now. In fact, I believe we need to go a step further than the 10-35 percent mandatory cuts in water usage. We need to ban lawns in most places in Southern California.

Why have I changed my t une? Because this drought -- the worst in California's recorded history -- has consistently been in the news since 2012 and the majority of people have not substantially changed their water use. And if everyone engaged in the profligate water use of my city and many others, we'd have depleted our reservoirs and groundwater even further and be that much closer to our faucets running dry.

During this drought, I have consistently hoped for a different response from the people in my city. The overwhelming majority of its adults are highly educated. I thought that, as they learned about California's dire water situation, their behavior would substantially change.

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