California Drought: Is ‘Gray Water’ The Solution? Israel Thinks So

California’s drought is now the worst in human history, and the Sunshine State is looking for help from overseas. One nation that’s making an effort to pitch into the relief effort is Israel, Ynet reports.

“We signed an agreement with Los Angeles, a city of seven million residents, on the subject of green technologies, we’re bringing water specialists from Israel for discussions with legislatures and we’re conducting conference calls with experts in Israel,” says David Segel, the Israeli Consul in southern California. “In the next few days we expect to sign an agreement with the municipality of Beverly Hills.”

One of the main solutions to the drought that Israeli companies have been trying to introduce is “gray water.” Gray water technologies divert water from showers, sinks, and washing machines to water gardens and parks. There has been U.S. resistance to this in the past, mostly stemming from public health concerns. However, new laws now allow Israeli companies to develop gray water infrastructure in California and potentially save the state from drought.

Israel has become a world leader in recycled water use after nearly draining the Sea of Galilee. Almost 100 percent of Israel farm water is gray water while most of California’s farms use water that’s suitable for drinking. This seems wasteful in a state that’s going through the worst drought in human history.

California is the seventh largest economy in the world, and over 40 million Americans live there. The drought has caused a water crisis, and government officials are struggling to cope with it. California Governor Jerry Brown ordered that homes and businesses should reduce their water usage by 25 percent. Residents have been uprooting their lawns and replacing grass with synthetic and drought resistant turf. Wasting water can now get you a fine of $10,000.

If you aren’t worried about the California drought, then you should. It’s not just about the grass. California grows over 33 percent of America’s vegetables and over 50 percent of the nation’s fruit and nuts.

California is now using one of its most valuable resources to help raise awareness about water conservation: celebrities. Some stars have been making a statement by letting their lawns go brown and encouraging or shaming their A-List neighbors to do the same, Yahoo News reports. In a tweet last month, Cher, a Malibu resident, spoke out against California using water for fracking.

Some celebrities, like Conan O’Brien and Lady Gaga, have been helping drought relief efforts by filming public service announcements which promote water conservation. On the other hand, super celebs like Kanye West and Kim Kardashian have been bashed for living in homes that are water guzzlers.

California’s drought is about to enter its fourth summer, and it seems obvious that uprooted lawns and celebrity statements aren’t the solution.

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