Ax the grass. Businesses step up to reduce water use

Posted Thursday, 13 February 2020 ‐ Las Vegas Sun

Powered by Southern Nevada Water Authority As the region becomes hotter and drier, the importance of water efficiency in Southern Nevada increases. Because of this, more companies are reducing their water use to help protect supplies and ensure the economy continues to thrive. The Southern Nevada Water Authority offers rebate incentives to businesses that remove grass and install water-efficient technologies. In 2019, businesses participating in SNWA rebate programs saved 88 million gallons of water by removing turf-grass and replacing old fixtures and devices. Water-smart landscape rebate Using this rebate, qualifying properties earn $3 per square foot of grass removed and replaced with water-smart landscaping up to the first 10,000 square feet converted per property, per year. Beyond the first 10,000 feet, SNWA will provide a rebate of $1.50 per square foot. The maximum award for any property in a fiscal year is $500,000. Water-efficient technologies rebate Under the Water Efficient Technologies (WET) program, technologies that save water outdoors earn a one-time payment of $45 per 1,000 gallons conserved annually, or up to 50% of the product purchase price, whichever is less. Technologies that reduce indoor water use earn a one-time payment of $15 per 1,000 gallons conserved annually or up to 50% of the product purchase price, whichever is less. Investing in water-saving technologies allows companies to reduce operation costs as well. Local businesses participating in the WET program have saved more than 15 billion gallons of water since 2001. Ice machines, High-efficiency toilets, showerheads, waterless urinals and cooling towers are some of the many preapproved technologies with predictable watering savings that qualify for a WET rebate. Visit snwa.com to learn how your business can be water smart. Local businesses get water smart Businesses looking to refresh their properties may find that the SNWA Water Smart Landscape rebate provides a financial incentive and an ongoing cost saving. The Hughes Center, a 68-acre commercial center in the heart of Las Vegas, removed grass from common areas and along the streets, and replaced it with desert-adapted plants as part of a 4,100-square-foot conversion. “The Hughes Center wanted to create cool community spaces for tenants that blend well with what SNWA is trying to achieve in its conservation efforts,” said Steve Swanson, branch manager for LandCare, a commercial landscape installation and maintenance company. “The bottom line matters, but what’s more important is the fresh look and inviting community space.” The Hughes Center has plans to replace 250,000 square feet of grass in the future. The Thomas & Mack Company completed 16 Water Smart Landscape projects at the McCarran Center complex, saving more than 4.6 million gallons of water since 2009 and netting $185,000 in SNWA rebates alone. The McCarran Center was looking old and dated, said Leslie Shurmur, portfolio director for the Thomas & Mack Company. “It was time to refresh it, and the conversions we’ve done have gone a long way toward doing that—as well as saving water,” Shurmur said. Since 2005, Peccole Ranch Community has converted about 350,000 square feet of landscaping in several phases and has more planned in the next decade. For more information about how SNWA rebates can benefit your business’s bottom line, visit snwa.com or contact a conservation specialist at 702-862-3740. Water-smart property management When Lighthouse Property Management upgraded the Avenue 965 complex, the company removed inefficient showerheads, toilets and faucets in all 131 studio units and replaced them with high-efficiency versions. “Many of our units had toilets that dated to the 1970s,” Regional Property Manager Cindy Lowry said. “We had concerns about installing low-flow toilets, wondering how many of them might get clogged going from 3 gallons per flush to 0.8 gallons per flush.” However, residents praised the company for the changes.

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