SAN RAFAEL (BCN) – The Marin Municipal Water District is providing recycled water directly to residents through a recycled water filling station that opened Wednesday to encourage county residents to reduce water waste during the county’s exceptional drought.

The station will be located at Armory Drive in San Rafael across the street from the Marin County Civic Center. Marin County residents can visit the site Mondays, Wednesday and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to fill up their own sealable containers with recycled water. The district anticipates the station will remain open through the fall, depending on rainfall.

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Encouraging the use of recycled water is one of the several measures to combat the area’s exceptional drought. Using recycled water for cleaning or irrigation decreases the amount of water being taken from the drinking water supply. Marin Water’s board of directors previously declared a water shortage emergency and declared a mandatory 40 percent reduction in water use throughout the district.

Recycled water can be used to water lawns, trees and gardens and wash outdoor surfaces, windows, walls and furniture so long as it doesn’t cause runoff to storm drains. The water also isn’t subject to current water restrictions that limit irrigation to certain days, so residents can use the water whenever they wish.

However, residents should not use the water for drinking, cooking, bathing, showering, filling swimming pools or water toys or hooking into household plumbing systems.

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Before using the station, each county resident must submit an application online or on location to confirm their residency and ensure they’ll be using the recycled water safely. Afterwards, they’ll receive an identification card that must be shown each time they fill up water.

The station will accept any sealable containers that can hold at least 10 gallons, and residents may collect up to 300 gallons of recycled water per trip. The county cautioned residents to take into account the weight of the water — just over 8 pounds per gallon — when deciding how much water to fill.

Applications and more information on recycled water can be found at marinwater.org/recycledwater.

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