Houston drops mandatory water restrictions

Houston residents are no longer under mandatory water restrictions, but still encouraged to conserve water.

January 11, 2012 11:14:31 AM PST
The city of Houston is lifting the mandatory water conservation measures imposed last summer, but that doesn't mean we're in the clear just yet.

The move follows recent rains and cooler temperatures, which have increased lake levels in all three drinking water reservoirs. As the city continues to experience severe drought conditions, Houston residents are asked to continue voluntary water conservation.

Although pre-drought water reservoir levels have not been reached, the city's storage is no longer at the level for mandatory conservation. Additionally, while water line breaks continue at a higher than normal pace, the stress on the system of last summer has been relieved.

According to the National Weather Service, the Houston area remains in severe to exceptional drought. Coupled with long term predictions, it is clearly possible that Houston may experience an even more challenging summer this year than last.

While surface water storage has recovered to an extent, it is unlikely that the city will have as much storage at start of summer this year as we had last year, leading to a likeliness that conservation measures will need to be reinstated. All water customers are strongly encouraged to practice and further develop water conservation efforts.