Center Staff Makes Statement at Public Hearing in Savannah on State Water Management Plan

October 17, 2007

  1. Drought conditions have made it abundantly clear that we must get serious about water management, which will require full and continuous funding for detailed planning & implementation. The General Assembly must not flinch or compromise on this pivotal point, and our elected officials at all levels must remain committed to comprehensive water management as a permanent obligation that is fundamental to serving the public interest.

  2. Vital as funding is to water management, we cannot buy our way out of the realities of limited resources, no matter how much we spend. The capacity of both our natural resources and infrastructure (water, wastewater treatment systems and stormwater facilities) must consistently guide decisions about growth and development. We cannot ignore these constraints without suffering more frequent and harmful crises as growth continues. This realization must be applied in determining the rates, densities, types, and locations of land use. Wise choices on these issues will require diligent control of growth, which must prohibit the unaccountable exploitation of speculative markets.

  3. To responsibly manage water and other limited resources, Georgia must protect the interests of all citizens in all regions of the state. This means that we must prohibit policies that reallocate water from one river basin to another, which would deprive some Georgians of their economic prospects and quality of life in order to benefit others. On behalf of our fellow citizens and future generations, Georgia's leadership must adopt accountable development policies that are dedicated to more responsible use and conservation of the natural systems upon which we all depend.
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