Georgia’s Comprehensive Statewide Water Plan hinges on the development of the water plans for the state’s 10 regions. When complete, the plans will improve the quality of life for citizens by providing a proactive, sustainable strategy for water resource management with the growing state’s long-term needs at the forefront. The plans will also support the economy of the state and region and protect public health and natural systems.
“This type of water planning is the foundation for providing sustainable solutions to effectively, prudently and proactively manage water resources today while accounting for future needs,” said Dan McCarthy, President and CEO of Black & Veatch’s global water business. “Our team is experienced in water and wastewater utility operation, power plant operation, agricultural water needs and environmental concerns. It will gain consensus around a program of actions that best balances the regions’ needs within available water resources as the state of Georgia plans for sustainable future water supplies.”
Black & Veatch will work with the Middle Chattahoochee, Upper Flint and Lower Flint-Ochlockonee Regional Planning Councils in using water resource assessments and population projections up to 40 years into the future to develop realistic estimates of future water use. To identify the gap between need and availability, those estimates will be compared to the availability of water resources. To bridge the gap, Black & Veatch will work with the councils to identify the right mix of new water source development and implementation of water conservation practices in the region to accommodate needs within the available resources.
The Middle Chattahoochee, Upper Flint and Lower Flint-Ochlockonee regions are located adjacently in the west and southwest portions of the state, and they include 38 of Georgia’s 159 counties – approximately 24 percent – and two of the state’s largest metropolitan areas: Columbus and Albany. The regions also include three of the state’s 14 major river systems, four lakes or reservoirs and several groundwater aquifer systems.
Quarterly drafts of the WDCPs will be prepared later this year followed by a review of water management practices. By mid-2011, the Georgia EPD will seek to adopt the finalized regional plans for implementation.