Enthusiasm for water conservation has only intensified as California's drought has dragged on and statewide water restrictions have gone into effect. It's manifested itself in many ways, from stink-eye at someone buying too many almonds in the grocery store to telling the media how disgusted you are at the too-lush, overly-green yards of celebrities. And then there's the good old fashioned droughtshaming: calling out the perceived guilty parties for sprinklers left on in the rain or hosed-down concrete—sometimes by naming businesses and sometimes by posting addresses—hoping to humiliate the offenders into compliance. NPR looked into the #droughtshaming phenomenon and found that just posting the address of a wanton water user is, as some probably guessed, not as effective as it might be satisfying.
The best thing to do, they say, is to use official city apps to report wasters: for LA, that can be done through 311 (the same service where you report graffiti or that couch gathering dust on the corner); Santa Monica has its own similar program called GO. These apps allow for the city agencies who enforce water regulations to crack down on water wasters. So these photos are nothing more than cautionary tales and reminders that someone is always watching where water is concerned. Says one Northeast LA resident who got snitched on by one of her neighbors, "I've been taking my watering can, believe it or not, and watering with my watering can. See everybody! I don't have my hose."
· In California, Technology Makes Droughtshaming Easier Than Ever [NPR]
· Kim and Kanye Neighbors Disgusted By Flower Freshness in Midst of Drought [Curbed LA]
· Mapping/Shaming the Most Water-Guzzling Places in SoCal [Curbed LA]