Graduation Year

2011

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.S.

Degree Granting Department

Geography, Environment and Planning

Major Professor

Kamal Alsharif

Keywords

Drought, Enforcement, Lawn Irrigation, Policy, Water Conservation

Abstract

The City of Tampa, Florida has instituted water restrictions over the past decade that have been primarily aimed at mitigating non-essential usage of water resources by limiting domestic lawn irrigation. The mandatory restrictions are enforced by the issuance of citations to violators, which is intended to promote compliance and deter from subsequent violations. This thesis provides a thorough investigation of historical water restriction with relation to compliance in order to determine which factors might be related to high rates of water usage within key Tampa communities. The objectives are to: (1) develop a GIS data set that can be used to quantitatively map and analyze domestic water usage at the parcel level; (2) examine the relationships between domestic water usage and key environmental and recreational factors, such as rainfall, seasonality, and usage of swimming pools; and (3) map the enforcement of residential lawn irrigation policy non-compliance to determine spatial relationships within the communities and test the effectiveness of current enforcement practices. The key factor that provided the most significant relationship to water usage within the communities was the amount of average monthly rainfall, with each community's water consumption having a significant negative correlation with precipitation. Water usage increased in each examined community after transitioning to more stringent water usage restrictions, with cited restriction violators increasing usage to a greater magnitude than their uncited counterparts. This may primarily be attributed to contradictions between local policy and community binding directives.

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