This week a group of 50 local residents and business owners spend 12 hours developing a new “Vision Statement” for Eastsound. Eastsound Water’s Paul Kamin took part in the process. One of the driving concepts of this volunteer group’s work and the resulting Vision was SUSTAINABILITY. Foundational to sustainability was the idea that our island’s natural resources have a limited “carrying capacity” associated with them.

Potable water is just one of a number of finite natural resources that must be considered when planning for growth. Eastsound Water has shown a commitment to managing our water community’s water resources responsibly.

In 2016 Eastsound Water set a new water use efficiency record. Since 2000, Eastsound Water has grown 47%. Water systems measure their capacity and growth via the concept of EQUIVALENT RESIDENTIAL UNITS or ERU’s. In 2000 Eastsound Water served 833 ERUs, by 2016 — 1228, a 47% increase.

Over this same period of time, Eastsound Water’s total annual production has DECLINED 31%. Production peaked in 2001 at 85.7 million gallons. In 2016 production was 58.6 million gallons.

One of the key metrics for measuring water system efficiency is gallons produced for each ERU. This is where Eastsound Water hit a new low (good) in 2016. Production per ERU was 47,720 gal/ERU; down from a peak of 85,700. This is a 55.6% improvement. Included are two charts that demonstrate both the water system’s growth and decrease in actual water us.

Our Eastsound community will continue to grow. How we will grow and at what rate is being determined in the Eastsound Sub Area planning process currently underway. Most Orcas residents recognize the need to do more with less. More efficient cars, and light bulbs, and toilets, and irrigation, and packaging…

Eastsound Water is committed to doing our part in responsible resource management to ensure that the water system and the water supply we are dependent on can support our evolving community.