November 5, 2019
Base-level rebate amounts for the popular Municipal Water District of Orange County’s (MWDOC) Turf Removal Program have increased from $2 to $3 per square foot of turf grass removed and replaced with climate-appropriate landscape. Rebates are available for both residents and businesses throughout Orange County with a cap of 5,000 and 50,000 square feet respectively. Projects with areas where plants and permeable landscape will be exchanged for turf may only include live plant material. Artificial grass does not qualify for the rebate program.
Since the MWDOC Turf Removal Program launched in 2010, 22.4 million square feet of turf grass has been removed, saving Orange County 5.36 billion gallons of water to date. Orange County residents and businesses have learned that 50-70% of total water consumed is used outdoors, and by replacing thirsty turf with smart irrigation equipment and plants that thrive in Southern California’s semi-arid climate, that number can be cut in half.
“Saving water should not be a reaction to drought or any other disaster, it’s a lifestyle,” says MWDOC General Manager, Rob Hunter. “If we want to secure a reliable water supply for the region long into the future, we must continue to make smart choices about how we use and save water today.”
To sweeten the pot for those on the fence about removing turf, MWDOC now offers new Landscape Design Assistance (LDAP) and Landscape Maintenance Assistance (LMAP) programs to complement the Turf Removal Program. Participants of LDAP receive FREE, 1-on-1 landscape design assistance from a qualified professional, plant recommendations, and an irrigation plan. Those who take advantage of LMAP will also receive FREE, 1-on-1 consultation services, a complete maintenance and care guide specific to their landscape, and recommended irrigation controller settings.
Funding for the Turf Removal Program is provided through a partnership with the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, United States Bureau of Reclamation, and Department of Water Resources, and is expected to continue through 2020. Rebates are subject to availability, and projects will be approved on a first-come, first-served basis.