SCE implements Stage 3 water rationing on Catalina Island

AVALON — Southern California Edison (SCE) has imposed Stage 3 water rationing as of Sept. 6. The 50 percent reduction in water usage is a 25 percent increase from the initial Stage 2 water rationing that was implemented Aug. 11, 2014.

SCE announced the mandatory water conservation and rationing requirements during two special public meetings held at 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., Aug. 24.

According to a Catalina Island Stage 3 fact sheet “Because SCE developed an additional source of drinking water for Avalon, a second desalination plant, the company was granted permission from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to delay implementing Stage 3 when the reservoir fell below 200 acre-feet in 2015. When full, the reservoir level is about 1,149 acre-feet.”

The reservoir refers to the Middle Ranch Reservoir.

For Avalon residents, with the exception of those residing in Hamilton Cove Villas, the new rationing levels mean a 40 percent reduction from baseline water usage. A 50 percent reduction from baseline water usage is required of customers not served by the desalination plants (customers outside Avalon city limits and Hamilton Cove Villas).

SCE has been providing water service to Catalina Island through water storage, wells, water treatment and distribution since 1962. Stage 1 Mandatory Water Conservation was implemented in June 2013 when the reservoir hit 600 acre-feet.

In 2014, the reservoir feel to 300 acre-feet resulting in the island being hit with Stage 2 water rationing due to the extreme drought conditions, according to SCE. Stage 2 Mandatory Water Conservation and Rationing required a 25 percent reduction of water use.

How boaters and visitors to the island will be impacted is unknown at this time, however, in the weekly Los Angeles Yacht Club newsletter, members were notified of the new water conservation efforts and reminded to do their part when visiting the club’s outpost on Howland’s Landing.

“We will need to redouble our efforts to conserve water at Howland’s Landing,” Commodore Carol Armitage wrote in the newsletter.

For more information Stage 3 rules and water allowances visit

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