Residential water consumption in Redlands, CA

by Rafael Fernandes

The City of Redlands must lower its water consumption by 20% by the year 2020 or risk losing state water grants.  To tackle this problem, Redlands wants a better understanding of how residential water is currently being consumed. Income, population density, and vegetation were explored as possible indicators of water consumption.

Required layers: Imagery and census data
The imagery was used to create a vegetation index, which defined a range of high to low vegetation. Census data was used to collect income and population density information.



Water consumption in Redlands, CA


Once  all of the data were processed, a correlation analysis was used to identify which of these three factors was the best indicator for water consumption.


Vegetation in Redlands, CA. Vertical axis = water consumption

Population in Redlands, CA. Vertical axis = Water consumption

Median household income, Redlands, CA. Vertical axis = water consumption


Population density and household income were good indicators of water consumption , however, vegetation was a significantly better indicator.  The vegetation may be a good indicator because Redlands is a part of the chaparral eco-region, which is known for dry climate.

With this information, Redlands can now target areas with the highest vegetation and highest water consumption to help lower their total consumption.

Vegetation index & water consumption


To see this study, or if you’d like more information, please contact Rafael Fernandes (RafaelFernandes103@gmail.com).

About the author

Project Manager for the ArcGIS Living Atlas of the World Environment Team

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