Drought and Water Quantity
The Carolinas need better water management! Midway through 2015, drought conditions are creeping back into the Carolinas, worst of all in the Catawba River basin.
The Catawba River basin was one of the hardest hit regions during the 2007-2008, which set the drought of record for many parts of the southeast. In 2008, this basin was named The #1 Most Endangered River in America because of the water demands in a relatively small region with such potent water demands. The issue of flow between North and South Carolina even led to a Supreme Court dispute.
Since the drought, people have continued to use less water, even as the region recovered and has had plenty of rain. Still, the Catawba River is in high demand. Concord-Kannapolis and Union County have pursued inter-basin transfers (IBTs) that would drain the Catawba of water. The population has grown. And as rain has been sparse in 2015, drought conditions are quickly escalating again.
CRF has continued working on water quantity issues in multiple facets:
Following and providing input on the Water Supply Master Plan (WSMP) assembled by Catawba-Wateree Water Management Group (CWWMG)
Tracking -- and when necessary, filing litigation to keep in check -- IBTs
Advocating for power generation that consumes less water for cooling
Advocating for better stormwater management practices, which will help reduce flooding and improve water quantity