The role of the Upper Flint Council is to prepare a recommended Water Development and Conservation Plan (WDCP). The long-term regional water resource management plan will include resource assessments, estimates of current and future water needs, and those management practices necessary to meet the region’s needs within the capabilities of the resources.
Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) will provide the Upper Flint Council with the results of Water Resource Assessments that model how much water is available from the water resources on which the region relies. Assessments will also estimate the capacity of the surface water resources to assimilate pollution.
In addition to the Water Resource Assessments, the Council will also use 10-, 20-, 30-, and 40-year water and wastewater demand forecasts for the region to 1) understand the likely changes the region will experience; and 2) identify any "gaps" that may exist between the capabilities of the resources as articulated by the Assessments and the future regional needs.
In the event "gaps" between available water and future (or current) demands are identified, the Council will determine which water and land use management practices should be employed to ensure there is sufficient water and assimilative capacity to meet future needs. EPD will use computer models to test the ability of the recommended practices to close any identified "gaps."
All of the water planning regions border other regions or share surface or groundwater resources with other regions; therefore, the Upper Flint Council will communicate and coordinate with adjacent, upstream and/or downstream councils as well as EPD to ensure the appropriateness of the recommended management practices.
EPD and the Upper Flint Council will use an iterative process of recommendation and modeling, to arrive at a set of management practices to meet the Region’s future needs.
The Upper Flint Council will submit a draft Water Development and Conservation Plan to the Director of EPD, who will adopt the plan or suggest changes so that it can be adopted. The Water Development and Conservation Plan is to be finalized and adopted by June 30, 2011.
After the Water Development and Conservation Plan is adopted for the region, all EPD permits and Georgia Environmental Facilities Authority (GEFA) grants and loans for water projects will be guided by the Plan.