LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Krekorian introduced two motions Tuesday aimed at helping the city deal with the state's drought and preserve its trees.
His first motion would mandate the use of recycled grey water, which Krekorian says he considers a smart solution to combat the drought.
The grey water motion would establish standards to allow for grey water to be used in home irrigation systems and toilet flushing. Greywater is water available for reuse from showers, sinks, laundry machines and bathtubs, though not toilets.
The motion also instructs city departments, including the city's Department of Water and Power, to report back to the City Council in 30 days with recommendations for revisions to L.A.'s Green Building Codes that would require the use of grey water systems in new construction projects.
Grey water systems save potable water and energy and, if used, would decrease water costs for homeowners, according to the councilman. A home system collecting the discharge from all available grey water sources would generate around 40 gallons per person, per day, he said.
"We need to explore every reasonable water conservation option that will help us get through this terrible drought and make our city more sustainable," Councilman Krekorian, chairman of the Budget and Finance Committee, said in a prepared statement.
"Using grey water systems in homes throughout Los Angeles just makes sense," he said. "These systems can take water that comes from our showers, sinks, laundry machines and bathtubs and recycle it for use in our lawns, which will save water, help us meet our city and state water reduction goals, and cut homeowners' water bills. I want to revise our building codes to make sure we are requiring the use of grey water systems for new construction projects."
The motion was referred to the City Council's Energy and Environment Committee.
His second motion aims to protect the city's large urban forest of street trees, 2,000 of which are removed each year, many due to private development and new construction. The motion instructs city departments, inducing Planning, Building and Safety, and the Bureau of Street Services Urban Forestry Division, among others, to study and adopt new policies that force developers to consider existing street trees prior to approving plans for new garages, driveways and curb cuts.
He also wants to create a new, more robust tree replacement requirement for trees that must be removed, and to increase penalties and fines for developers who remove street trees without a permit.
"Our urban forest needs to be protected and preserved," Krekorian said. "These trees enhance our neighborhoods and are an integral part of our city's ecosystem. I believe we can come up with sensible standards that help retain our urban forest, while allowing for new construction projects to be built."
This motion was referred to the Public Works and Gang Reduction Committee.