Maybe it is projects such as replacing 10,000 toilets in Denver Public Schools. Maybe it is Denver Water’s ceaseless “Use Only What You Need” campaign. Or maybe residents seeing scarcity are self-motivated. Whatever the reasons, water use in metro Denver has dipped to 40-year lows.The total amount residents used in December decreased to 3.19 billion gallons, and in January to 3.36 billion gallons — down from previous winter highs topping 4 billion gallons, utility officials said.The last time December use dropped this low was in 1973 when Denver had 350,000 fewer people.”Our customers are responding. … Conservation has been successful and will be an integral part of meeting our future water needs — along with reuse and new supply,” Denver Water manager Jim Lochhead said. JCOR Mechanical plumber Andy Feuerborn solders a new fitting Thursday at Colfax Elementary School. (Joe Amon, The Denver Post)The low use this winter continues a trend of declining water use despite a growing population. Denver residents use 82 gallons a day per person for all indoor and outdoor purposes, utility data show. That’s down from 104 gallons in 2001 and puts Denver ahead of other Western cities that are counting on conservation to avoid running dry.Water supply has become more of a challenge around the West, with population growth and droughts projected to be more frequent and severe. The crisis in California, where mountain snowpack lags at 25 percent of normal, prompted Interior Secretary Sally Jewell to meet with Gov. Jerry Brown last week to hash out relief.Farmers use the most water, by far, for food production — an 85 percent share in Colorado. Yet it is city dwellers who are making the greatest strides in water conservation.Denver Water leaders last week declared a new target for 1.3 million customers: 30 gallons a day for indoor use.The overall water conservation effort relies on a widening strategy: rebates for those who switch to water-saving appliances, tiered water rates that encourage using less, summer lawn-watering restrictions, and a rule that all new development must include soil “amendments” so that soil retains more water.Water bills still are relatively low. Denver Water charges about $455 a year for … – Click Here To Visit Article Source