UCI is committed to responsible and sustainable water use. Water use in California continues to be a challenge for a growing population with urbanization and increased demand. Reducing campus water use contributes to our overall greenhouse gas emission reduction.

In 2013, the UCI Water Resources Working Group formed to create a Water Action Plan (WAP) that builds upon past initiatives to identify more ways to achieve an additional 25% reduction in water use. The WAP takes a watershed approach to address water resource goals, planning strategies, and project opportunities in support of the UC Policy on Sustainable Practices.

Chart depicting water use at baseline year, 2022, and 2023 for UCI

Water Use

UCI established a 3-year baseline from 2005-2008 to base a 25% reduction in water use by 2025. The baseline established was ~19,000 gallons per person annually. In 2023, water use is ~7,500 gallons per person annually. This is a further reduction than our original 2025 goal, and we continue to work towards reduction efforts.

Recycled Water

UCI established a partnership with the Irvine Ranch Water District (IRWD) at the inception of the campus. UCI has used recycled water for all landscape irrigation due to this partnership. As a result, ~ 34% of potable water is recycled through IRWD and reused on the campus for irrigation.

Infrastructure Projects

UCI has continued to implement projects that help reduce water consumption. Some of these projects include turf replacement with wise meadow planting and drought tolerant landscaping, central plant equipment upgrades, irrigation reduction across campus, and LEED building standards in renovations and new building construction.

Take Action

Report any leak, excessive water runoff, or other water waste on campus. You can do so by contacting the Facilities Management Help Desk, emailing fm-servicedesk@uci.edu, or by submitting a work order.