RIVERSIDE: Toro participates in water conservation challenge

RIVERSIDE: Toro participates in water conservation challenge

A nonprofit organization is reaching out to individuals and cities to cut water and energy usage

A national water conservation contest in which cities compete to get pledges from residents to save water is at the mid-way point.

The Wyland National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation is supported in part by The Toro Company, the Riverside-based irrigation company.

Founded by single-named marine-life artist Wyland, the non-profit foundation is dedicated to promoting awareness of water and conservation issues.

The challenge, which started on April 1, asks participants to go to http://www.mywaterpledge.com, and click in to find their city.

Participants make a series of promises to work at home for conservation, including taking shorter showers, fix leaky faucets, landscape with appropriate plants, use lawn sprinklers wisely, recycle, and make other efforts such as walking, biking or taking a bus more frequently.

Cities with the highest number of participants in their population size category win the friendly competition, and one of those cities will be selected for a “pocket park landscape makeover’” with irrigation supplied by Toro.

Individual participants in winning cities have a chance to win a 2016 Toyota Prius. There are an estimated $50,000 in prizes overall, including $1,000 gift cards for home improvement center shopping, plus earth-friendly cleaning product baskets, dimmable LED light bulbs, water-saving shower heads and other products.

In 2015, Riverside was 10th among cities with populations of 300,000 to 599,999.

Toro is making a daily giveaway of its Evolution irrigation controller with a wireless weather sensor, said Toro senior marketing manager Burnett Jones.

This is the Riverside company’s third year of involvement with the Wyland challenge, Jones said.

“We really view this more as a partnership,” he said. “It’s a way to get the message out about how to use water more wisely” that also has business traction for Toro, he said.

There were 42,000 who took part in the 2015 challenge, with support from mayors from 36 states, the foundation reported.

“By sticking to their commitments, the collective efforts of these residents will reduce national water waste by 1.5 billion gallons, reduce waste sent to landfills by 47 million pounds, eliminate more than 141,000 pounds of hazardous waste from entering our watersheds and save 139 million kilowatt hours of energy,” the foundation claimed.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE

What: The Wyland National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation

Website: http://www.mywaterpledge.com

Prizes: 2016 Toyota Prius, $1,000 shopping spree at a home improvement store, 50 “Greening Your Cleaning” gift baskets from ECOS Earth Friendly Products, 50 Toro landscape timers and wireless weather sensors, 50 Cree six-packs of dimmable LED light bulbs, 50 sets of two Avex Brazos Autoseal water bottles, 25 EcoFlow showerheads from Waterpik

City categories (population): 5,000-29,999; 30,000- 99,999; 100,000-299,999; 300,000-599,999; 600,000-plus

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