In September 2009, the state adopted the Water Conservation in Landscaping Act of 2006 (AB 1881). As of January 1, 2010, all local jurisdictions in California are required to implement this law, with the aim of reducing water consumption by landscaping.
Governor Brown’s Drought Executive Order of April 1, 2015 (EO B-29-15) directed DWR to update the State’s Model Water Efficient Landscape Ordinance (MWELO) through expedited regulation. The California Water Commission approved the revised MWELO Ordinance on July 15, 2015.
Landscaping is believed to use, on average, more than half the water used in urban areas. The state Department of Water Resources (DWR) has prepared a Model Water Efficient Landscape Ordinance (MWELO) for use by local jurisdictions to ensure a reduction of water waste and to stretch the state’s limited water supplies. Jurisdictions have a choice to adopt a local ordinance which is “at least as effective as” the MWELO, or to apply the MWELO.
The City of Greenfield is currently applying the state’s MWELO
.The ordinance is available on the web at: http://www.water.ca.gov/wateruseefficiency/docs/MWELO09-10-09.pdf .
Effective December 1, 2015, the State’s Model Water Efficient Landscape Ordinance (MWELO) went into effect and further clarifies Greenfield’s current landscape requirements pursuant to the City's Chapter 17.54: Landscaping Ordinance.
Applicability of the MWELO includes:
New construction projects with an aggregate landscape area of 500 square feet or larger that requires a building or landscape permit, plan check, or design review; or
Rehabilitated landscape projects with an aggregate landscape area of 2,500 square feet or larger that requires a building or landscape permit, plan check, or design review; or
Existing landscapes (limited to MWELO Chapter 2.7 §493, 493.1, 493.2); and
New and rehabilitated cemeteries (limited to MWELO Chapter 2.7 §492.4, 492.11, 492.12); and
Existing cemeteries (limited to MWELO Chapter 2.7 §493, 493.1, 493.2).
Registered local, state or federal historical sites are exempt from the MWELO.