the water conservation ratchet

While there is much water policy Sturm und Drang in California over the extent to which water conservation mandates should or should not be extended now that weather has provide some drought relief, the reality is that the rules may not matter:

The state of California ordered San Juan to reduce water usage by 33% from 2013 levels in response to a statewide drought emergency. While local water supply conditions have improved in 2016 with El Nino rains and some easing in drought restrictions is expected, some degree of conservation has likely become habitual. Usage levels may remain low.

That’s from Fitch’s bond rating on the San Juan Water District. In the topsy turvy world of municipal water management, conservation is a financial problem. But in the bigger picture, these are good sorts of problems to have.