FAQ Topic: Drought

What restrictions has the City Council placed on water use in Petaluma?

We are now in Stage 4 of this plan, designed to reduce our city’s water usage by 30% through mandatory potable water use restrictions. The restrictions below listed with a * were updated on August 1, 2022. ALL WATER CUSTOMERS Limited outdoor watering schedule reduced to two times per week –  overnight Tuesday and Saturday from 7:00 pm. to 8:00 … Continued

What is the Water Shortage Contingency Plan?

Similar to water suppliers of a certain size in California, the City of Petaluma is required to maintain a plan to ensure we will meet water needs over the next 20 years. This plan, updated every 5 years, is called the Urban Water Management Plan (UWMP). In addition to planning for normal water years, the … Continued


Yes. In April 2021, both Governor Newsom and the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors declared a drought emergency in Sonoma County. The State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) reported that 95% of California is experiencing moderate to exceptional drought conditions and has called upon all water users to begin saving water. On Sept. 13, 2021, … Continued

What is the City doing to Save Water?

Development: All new development is subject to building codes that require water efficiency (indoor and outdoor). Currently, new development is not allowed to install landscaping. City Parks and Facilities: Installing water-efficient toilets and faucets Reduced Watering 1-2x per week Hand-watering trees Cut irrigation to all grass playfields that use potable (non-recycled) water Water Conservation Programs: … Continued

Is power washing allowed?

As of January 18, 2022, potable water use for washing down sidewalks, driveways, buildings, structures, patios, or other hard surfaced areas is prohibited, except sanitation.

Can residents purchase recycled water?

Petaluma’s recycled water program does not currently offer service to residential customers. The recycled water we do create is fully contracted to long-term existing customers that provide a critical service to the City during wet years. To implement a residential program, we would first have to adjust our program, get approvals from oversight bodies, and … Continued

Does the City sell recycled water to residential customers?

Some water agencies are offering their recycled water to residential customers. Unfortunately, Petaluma is not able to do that at this time.  Petaluma’s recycled water program is fully contracted to long-term, existing customers that provide a critical service to the City during wet years. Implementing a residential program would involve adjusting our program, getting approvals … Continued

Why are some City parks still being watered?

You may notice some parks around town turning brown while some stay green. Why? We have turned off water at 26+ of our highest usage parks (these will turn brown) We have drastically reduced use at many parks to conserve water while preserving trees (grass at these parks may remain partially green) We are utilizing … Continued

Why are we building more houses if we are in a drought?

The population of California (like the rest of the world) is growing. In order to ensure there is enough housing for everyone to live affordably, the State of California determines projected population numbers then estimates how many housing units must be created to meet the housing demand. The State then calls upon cities to help, … Continued

Close window