Panda Express Seeks to Become WaterSmart Business Through C2E-Tucson Water Partnership

Nov. 6, 2013

TUCSON, Ariz. (Nov. 6, 2013) – The first-ever business participant in Tucson’s Conserve to Enhance (C2E) program, the Panda Express at Tucson's Corners (2485 N. Swan), recently completed a WaterSmart Business audit through Tucson Water. After installing seven faucet aerators at less than $5 each, the store is now saving an estimated 1,000 gallons of water per day.

“At Panda Express, our mission is to deliver an exceptional Asian dining experience by building an organization where people are inspired to better their lives,” said Steve Xiu, General Manager of the Panda Express Tucson Corners location and the Panda Express C2E coordinator. “It is our hope to inspire and raise awareness about the importance of water conservation to our associates and guests and to better our community by participating in the Tucson C2E program. I’m happy to report that my store is saving more than 1,000 gallons of water per day and we already see the impact.”

According to C2E Program Coordinator Candice Rupprecht, the unique collaboration between C2E and the WaterSmart Business program allows local commercial water users the opportunity to conserve water and give back to the community.

“A water audit can help Tucson businesses save significant amounts of water,” Rupprecht said. “Through C2E, the financial savings from conserving that water is then re-invested in revitalizing our washes and urban riparian spaces, an often underfunded local need.”

The WaterSmart Business Program from Tucson Water helps participating local business and commercial customers conserve water, boost water efficiency, and reduce utility costs. Following a water audit, businesses develop a Water Management Plan and create a water budget to maintain water savings.

“We are excited to support Panda Express’s efforts to conserve water while participating in our newly enhanced WaterSmart Business program,” said Harold Thomas, Tucson Water Conservation Specialist. “The University of Arizona provided this opportunity to us through the Conserve to Enhance program, and we look forward to future collaborations.”

The C2E program works in three ways: Helping individuals save water and track their resulting financial savings; encouraging donations; and funding projects that enhance and restore local washes, rivers and urban waterways. Funding for C2E is provided by program participants who have donated money based on their water savings, and from Tucson Water customers who have donated via the Riparian Enhancement and Open Space check box on their Tucson Water bill.

C2E, which is housed at the University of Arizona Water Resources Research Center, recently added another business participant: the Panda Express restaurant at 1055 N. Silverbell Rd. The second store to officially join C2E, the Panda Express on Silverbell conducted a WaterSmart Business audit on Oct. 24.

“As a C2E participant, Panda Express can use its water savings to invest in the Tucson community,” said Rupprecht. “It's exciting to see them take such a leading role in conserving our city's precious water resources.”

Learn more about C2E and Tucson Water’s WaterSmart Business Program.