Welcome to Culver Water Currents—your monthly e-source for industry news and product information, including the latest educational and promotional items, trends, tips, stories, and events.
This month, learn about the EPA’s newly updated Effective Utility Management Primer, tools to promote water-saving behaviors in the garden, and best practices for teaching water conservation.
Culver Company’s Products Group can help you select or create the right educational and promotional products for your outreach efforts. Be sure to check out Culver Water Currents each month for your industry product news.
Rising costs, aging infrastructure, new technologies, increasingly stringent regulatory requirements, population growth, and a rapidly changing workforce are just a few of the many challenges facing today’s water utilities. In order to find practical and cost-effective solutions to these issues, the EPA and a 10-member coalition have updated a detailed set of guidelines to reflect 2016 refinements.
In January of this year, the coalition released the updated Effective Utility Management (EUM) Primer, a 60-page document that provides specific protocols for optimizing performance, reliability, and accountability. The primer provides a framework for utilities to comprehensively assess current operations and to identify a path to improving key priority areas.
In addition to the EPA, the coalition includes:
These organizations represent public and private sector utilities and those state agencies that provide water and wastewater services to 90 percent of the country.
The EUM Primer is available as a free download at WaterEUM.org. For small and rural utilities, there are additional resources specifically designed for them, including the Rural and Small Systems Guidebook to Sustainable Utility Management.
The EUM Primer focuses on four primary components to help utilities identify and address their most pressing needs through an incremental, continual improvement management approach. Ultimately, it’s a process that will help utilities shift from chasing the “distraction of the day” to a more proactive and balanced focus on those areas that require improvement.
The Primer also includes sections on measuring performance, developing resources, and an expanded implementation guide to help utilities create a uniquely designed improvement plan.
For additional information, visit WaterEUM.org.
For many residents throughout the country, March brings thoughts of spring and gardening. According to the National Gardening Association, 75 percent of US households participated in DIY lawn and garden care last year. The 36.1 billion-dollar-industry gained six million new customers last year, five million of which were 18- to 34-year-old millennials. That’s a lot of incremental water use and a significant opportunity to educate. Community events that celebrate Earth Day and Drinking Water Week offer the perfect platform to teach residents how to manage water use in the garden.
Many homeowners who live in extreme drought situations, like California, are already taking significant steps to limit their lawn and garden water use by removing the turf from their yards and switching to more native and drought-tolerant landscaping. However, making an investment in those homeowners who don’t want or need to go this route can make a big impact. Connecting with them through seasonal, community events is an easy way to teach alternative yet sustainable gardening practices and to provide practical tools to facilitate behavior change. They’ll come to understand that the joys of gardening can still be achieved even while saving water.
Encourage water-saving behaviors this spring. Consider handing out any of these items at your community events:
Low-Flow Hose Nozzle (#87500): This two-and-a-half-gallon-per-minute hose nozzle features an exclusive volume-control dial that regulates flow for additional savings. Durable, medium-duty plastic body, cushioned dial ring, and grip protects against damage. Seven water-saving spray settings enable more water efficiency with less water waste. Imprint your name and message on the side of this unique item.
Frog Moisture Meter (#87510): This meter will accurately measure the moisture at the root level—encouraging more efficient watering and healthier lawns and gardens. Your name, logo, and message are prominently displayed on the face of this useful conservation item.
Drought-Tolerant Flower Seeds: Help residents save gallons of water by encouraging them to plant drought-tolerant flowers and plants. Our seed packets have a large imprint area on the backside that allows you to feature your logo, contact information, and a conservation message. Seed packets are made of recycled paper.
Rain Gauges: Help residents eliminate wasteful irrigation and save hundreds and even thousands of gallons of water. Rain gauges indicate rainfall amounts and whether lawns and gardens are getting enough moisture.
Including the local school system in your public outreach plans is an effective way to show you are invested in the education of our children. Educating specifically about water science and conservation enables you to demonstrate your company’s core values to school personnel and parents alike. Studies confirm that it can significantly improve customer satisfaction.
At Culver, our products are designed to make your job of working with the school systems easier. Developed to align with state and national academic standards, our materials can be easily integrated into the curriculum. To enrich the teaching experience, we’ve created a teacher’s guide, including pre- and post-tests that are available for download on our website. All of this helps to turn teachers into deputies for your public education program.
Take a look at two of our bestsellers on the subject of water science, conservation, and quality for your review. These booklets not only meet educational standards, but they are also filled with fun activities and experiments that engage students through hands-on, active learning.
Our World of Water Activity Booklet (Grades 3–6, #35550) teaches children through a series of fun puzzles and experiments—demystifying the three states of matter, the role of water in the earth’s surface processes, living things and the environment, as well as resource conservation. One experiment helps to learn basic concepts by asking students to freeze water in a closed container. Once the water is frozen, they are asked to hypothesize and identify that water expands when frozen.
Water and Your World™ (Grades 4–7, #37130) helps older students with many math, science, and language arts activities. Kids develop critical thinking skills by making their own water filters. They are asked to predict which materials filter best. After they test to see what happens, they’re asked to discuss how the results compared to their predictions.
Consider using these materials for your public outreach efforts. You’ll create teacher advocates, empower students to conserve and protect our vital water source, and you’ll reach parents—our research shows that three quarters of students take the booklets home to share with siblings and parents.
For pricing and ordering information, give us a call today at 800-428-5837, or visit www.culverco.com/catalog for our complete catalog.
For many of us, March is when we begin to entertain thoughts of spring. With events celebrating Earth Day in April and Drinking Water Week in May, it’s the perfect time to think about what you need to promote your conservation message. Community events are a great opportunity to get the whole family involved in learning about water and the importance of conservation. When you support local events, you’ll show your commitment to the community while creating goodwill and improving customer satisfaction.
Using the right educational literature with the right promotional item at the right community event can engage children and families in a way that transforms learning into lifelong behaviors. Consider adding a promotional item that reinforces educational information to get the more from your outreach efforts. Our research shows that when you pair a branded promotional item with educational material, recipients are more likely to remember your company’s name and message.
Printed with soy-based ink on recycled stock, this activity book teaches younger children the ways in which water is vital to people and our planet. Fun pictures and puzzles teach children practical ways to conserve water throughout the home. They’ll also learn that they have a role to play in protecting our water sources by not putting trash in streams, rivers, and sewers.
This unique bookmark is a nice companion product to reinforce your environmental sustainability message. Handmade with biodegradable paper and embedded with wildflower seeds, parents and children can plant it together and watch it grow. Courtesy of your utility, they’ll learn firsthand about the role water plays in the growing process and the effect of efficient watering. Custom designs, alternate shapes, and colors of seeded paper are available. Text changes can be made at no additional charge.
All of the above products can be customized to include your company name, logo, and contact information. For additional information about any of our water conservation materials, call us at 800-428-5837, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.culverco.com/catalog.