Photo Release -- Calling All Mayors - A National Challenge for Water

With U.S. Water Bills Expected to Triple, National Mayor's Challenge for Water Conservation, March 30-April 30, Asks Mayors to Take Leadership Role for Future of Water

Aliso Viejo, California, UNITED STATES

LOS ANGELES, March 1, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- With the nation facing $1 trillion in water infrastructure improvements in the next 25 years, a group of federal, non-profit, private, and local organizations are asking mayors across the nation to compete next month to see who can inspire the most residents in their cities to become the most "water wise."

A photo accompanying this release is available at

The mayors earn bragging rights from winning the Mayor's Challenge for Water Conservation, a non-profit competition, March 30-April 30, to see which leaders can best inspire their residents to make a series of informative, easy-to-use online pledges aimed at drastically slashing water and energy use across the nation. In return residents can win a Toyota Prius Hybrid from national presenting partner Toyota, water saving fixtures, and hundreds of other prizes. The program is in celebration of the 40th Anniversary of the Clean Water Act.

"The mayor's challenge gives communities a way to come together for one very important reason — the future of our planet," says famed marine artist Wyland, who piloted the Mayor's Challenge concept to more than 200 South Florida and Southern California cities in 2009 and 2011. "We see mayors making gentleman's bets over who will win college football games. Here's a way for them to take on an even more important challenge in a friendly, competitive way."

Water bills are expected to triple in the U.S. in some areas of the country between now and 2035. With support from Toyota, US Environmental Protection Agency, EPA WaterSense, US Forest Service, NOAA, National Geographic Explorer in Residence Dr. Sylvia Earle, WaterPik, Rain Bird, Lowe's and STERLING Plumbing, mayors nationwide are encouraged to challenge their residents to conserve water, save energy, and reduce pollution on behalf of their city at throughout the month of April, a habit the cities hope to see become permanent. The cities of Los Angeles, Honolulu, and Redondo Beach were among the first to accept the challenge. Other mayors are following suit by issuing council resolutions, creating steering committees, and using the city's "highest" seat to urge their residents to save water, energy, and reduce pollution. 

Cities will be divided into four regions (West, Midwest, South and Northeast) and categorized by population (5,000-30,000 residents, 30,001-100,000 residents, 100,000+ residents). Cities with the highest percentage of residents who take the challenge win. Participants in the winning cities will be eligible to win over $50,000 in prizes, including the Grand Prize of a Toyota Prius Hybrid, as well as custom-designed sprinkler systems from Rain Bird, Eco-Flow Showerheads from WaterPik, Sterling water-saving toilets, and hundreds of gift cards from Lowe's. Residents will also discover resources in their area to take their commitment of conservation even further, from regional water and energy resource issues to cost-saving tips at home.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Mayors can participate by signing online letter of support. The challenge is free to cities. For information, cities can call 949 643-7070 and request participation information.

About the Wyland Foundation

Founded in 1993 by environmental artist Wyland (best known for his series of 100 monumental marine life murals), the Wyland Foundation, a 501c3 non-profit organization, is actively engaged in teaching millions of students around the county about our ocean, rivers, lakes streams, and wetlands. The foundation's latest project, FOCUS (Forests, Oceans, Climate – and us) brings together the U.S. Forest Service, NOAA, and numerous non-profits to teach young people about the future of our water supplies, climate, and global health.

Key Facts (Source U.S. EPA):

American households lose more than 1 trillion gallons of water each year due to leaky pipes, toilets, showerheads and other fixtures. That's equal to the water supply used by Arizona, Utah, Colorado, and New Mexico for more than a year.

The average American home leaks more than 10,000 gallons of water per year, which is equivalent to the water needed to wash 280 loads of laundry, take more than 600 showers or meet the average family's water needs for a month.

The photo is also available at Newscom,, and via AP PhotoExpress.

U.S Mayors Go Head to Head to Save Water