Shaping Connecticut’s State Water Plan
The planning effort for the State Water Plan is underway and PRWC is an active “voice at the table” in many aspects of its development, which is led by the Connecticut Water Planning Council. Under Public Act 14-163, the Council was charged with the development of a State Water Plan that is to be submitted to the joint standing committees of the General Assembly by January 1, 2018.
The Public Act identifies 17 requirements for the State Water Plan relating to the environment, public health, planning and development and energy and technology. While each requirement is significant, three are particularly meaningful to PRWC in that the requirements serve to highlight the importance of our core work related to science, research and educational outreach:
(1) Identify the quantities and qualities of water that are available for public water supply, health, economic, recreation and environmental benefits on a regional basin scale considering both surface and groundwater.
(2) Recommend the utilization of the state’s water resources, including surface and subsurface water, in a manner that balances public water supply, economic development, recreation and ecological health.
(8) Inform residents of the state about the importance of water resource stewardship and conservation.
PRWC is applying our data and research to the development of the State Water Plan and is underscoring the future local and regional water resource planning needs for our watershed and others across the state. Our participation allows us to highlight what we see as being the most relevant issues including the review of registered water diversion permits and the impact of groundwater withdrawals on stream flow. When completed, the State Water Plan may lead to key water resource policy changes that would be supported by new state laws and regulations. To learn more about the development of State Water Plan and to stay connected with new information, the state has launched the following website: www.ct.gov/water.