Recycled water keeps Irvine green, even during droughts.

When drought hits, many communities see public landscapes, medians and even parks turn brown.

But not Irvine. Why? Recycled water.

“If Irvine looks greener and lusher than other communities, it’s because of our recycled water program,” said Irvine Ranch Water District General Manager Paul Cook. “While others cut back, Irvine is able to maintain its tree-lined streets, green medians and lush common areas – because every gallon of recycled water used there saves a gallon of drinking water.”

In Irvine, nearly all public and commercial irrigation comes from recycled water. It’s a sustainable resource, and IRWD can produce a staggering 25 million gallons per day. On an annual basis, it could fill the Olympic-sized pool at the city’s William Woollett Jr. Aquatics Center 13,000 times.

The sustainable resource then runs through about 570 miles of purple-colored pipes across IRWD’s service area.

But it’s not just keeping Irvine green. It’s keeping it cool, too.

Some of the district’s recycled water is used in commercial buildings – much of it for heating and cooling systems. About 130 local buildings, including 200 and 400 Spectrum Towers, are equipped to tap into this sustainable supply. This more recent innovation also saves tens of millions of gallons for cooling and toilet flushing.

So, as California experiences drought, Irvine is well-equipped to save water while keeping the city green and cool.