residents & Businesses

Water Conservation Toolbox
Water Bills

Met Council staff have compiled current and relevant water conservation information from public agencies, nonprofit organizations, and professional organizations. Select a category below for an expanded list of topics that focus on your specific interest or question.

General knowledge

Why should I conserve?


 Wasting Water is Weird (video)

Satirical approach to water conservation education

 Why Water Efficiency

Environmental, financial, and energy benefits of water conservation

Why Save Water Facts

Water conservation statistics and facts

What is water efficiency?

 Resource Library

Articles on residential water use, fixtures, and appliances

How can I protect our groundwater?


 Overview of source water protection

Learn how the Minnesota Department of Health protects our groundwater supplies.

What is the status of water in Minnesota?


Groundwater Digest (PDF)

Facts on groundwater resources and availability in the Twin Cities

 Groundwater Hydrographs

Historical record of groundwater levels in monitoring wells maintained by the Department of Natural Resources

 MN Water Availability Report - 2010 (PDF)

2010 review of Minnesota surface and groundwater resources and trends in water supply

What is the source of my water?


 All Water Supply Profiles (PDF)

Source and water consumption information for all municipalities in Met Council service area

What is the quality of my tap water?


 Drinking Water Regulations

Summary of regulations affecting quality of potable water

 Drinking Water Quality General Information

General information on quality of potable water in Minnesota

What is the quality of my bottled water?


 Bottled Water Basics 

Overview of bottled water quality terminology, requirements, and sources of additional information

How much water is used in my city?


 MN Water Use Data - 1988 through 2011

Scroll down to find Excel spreadsheet of surface and groundwater appropriated in Minnesota for all permit holders

Does my city have a water conservation program?


 Water Efficiency Grant Program

Learn how cities are conserving water

How does conserving water conserve energy?


 Drops to Watts

Description of the connection between potable water and energy consumption

 Reduce hot water use

Tips for conserving hot water

How much energy is used by my water usage?



Home, water, energy, climate calculator

Indoor water consumption and conservation

How much water do I consume indoors?


 How much water does a person use at home in a day?

National average of water usage for indoor activities

 Water Use Calculator

Calculator for indoor uses, only


How much water could I consume if I practice indoor water conservation?


 Water Sense 

Calculate water savings for replacement of fixtures and appliances

How can I conserve by improving my indoor water habits?


 Home Water Tips

Tips and links on water conservation

How do I find and repair leaks?


 DIY tips

Instructions on detecting leaks and replacing fixtures

How do I find a water efficient appliance or fixture?


 Water Saving Products

Search for specific products

How can I find specific water conservation tips for my commercial or industrial business?


 Water conservation strategies  

Information on how to develop a plan to improve water efficiency in commercial building

 Hotel Challenge  

Webinars and other information for hotel operators

 Commercial - Managing Water Use  

Plan and implement water efficiency at various commercial facilities

 Water Efficiency  

An online water conservation calculator

 Minnesota Industrial Water Conservation 

Where can I find examples of water conservation retrofit projects by local businesses?


 Water Conservation Tips

Local case studies of business water conservation efforts

What are the benefits of installing water-efficient fixtures into new or remodeled buildings?


 Green Building Introduction

Describes components of green buildings. 

What are current best practices for new construction?


 New Homes

Incorporating water efficiency into new home construction

 Toilet Efficiency and Flush Performance

Toilet efficiency information for designers

 Tools for Sustainable Buildings in Minnesota

Water use design requirements for State of Minnesota funded building projects

What conservation practices are required in the Minnesota Plumbing and Building Codes?


 MN Plumbing Code

Plumbing requirements for Minnesota buildings. Does not currently contain water conservation standards.

Outdoor water consumption and conservation

How much water do I consume outdoors?


 Residential water calculator

Graphic calculator of water usage. Includes outdoor usage.  

How much water do I need to maintain a lawn?


 Watering Lawns and Other Turf

Tips to maintain lawn without over consumption of water

What are some tips for reducing outdoor water usage?


 Smart Outdoor Practices

General water efficiency information for outdoor usage

 Irrigation System Controllers

WaterSense-certified Smart Controllers conserve water and reduce irrigation costs

What is a Minnesota-centric water-wise landscape?


 How to use Native Plants for Landscaping and Restoration in Minnesota

General information on native plants

 Water Smart Landscape Design Tips

More suggestions on creating a water-wise landscape

Where can I find advice on hiring a water-wise contractor?


 Landscape Irrigation Professionals

Tips on hiring an irrigation contractor to conduct water audits and install efficient irrigation systems

How can I improve the soil to conserve water in a garden?


 Soils and composting

Information on soil fertility and health

How do I select plants for a water-wise garden?


 Landscaping with Native Plants

Minnesota native plants

 Plants for Stormwater Design

Native plants appropriate for wet conditions, including rain gardens

What are the benefits of mulch in a water-wise landscape?


 Mulching the home landscape

Advantages and disadvantages of variety of mulch materials

How can I improve my landscape watering habits?


 Does your landscape have a drinking problem?

Information on setting up efficient irrigation systems for home yards and garden

How can I collect stormwater for irrigation?


 Stormwater Reuse Guide

Fact sheets, project planning, resources, and references for developing irrigation and other systems utilizing stormwater

 Video Guide on Rain Barrels

Design, build and install rain barrels in the Twin Cities

What are the  benefits of a water-wise landscape?


 Great Lakes Pollinator Plant List

Selecting native plants that are beneficial to pollinators