Heather Cooley

Water Program Coordinator, The Pacific Institute

We are seeing more sprinkler, including microsprinkler which is very efficient, and much more drip irrigation, a move away from flood irrigation and better management of when you apply water and how much you apply. They’ve made some major improvements on the agriculture side, but there is a lot of potential that remains.

Heather Cooley sees that there's still plenty of potential for Californians to be more efficient with their water. As the Water Program Coordinator for the Pacific Institute, Cooley conducts and oversees research on an array of water issues, such as the connections between water and energy and sustainable water use and management. Drawing from her expertise, she has testified before the U.S. Congress on the impacts of climate disruption for agriculture as well as innovative approaches to solving water problems in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. 

Cooley has received the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Award for Outstanding Achievement and her work was recognized when the Pacific Institute received the first U.S. Water Prize in 2011.

Heather Cooley's Simple Shift

In my home I have high efficiency toilets which use 1.3 gallons per flush, and high-efficiency showerheads. An important way to save both water and energy is a front-loading clothes washer. I'm in about 20 gallons per person per day in my house [which is] pretty low.

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