The South Georgia Regional Commission (SGRC) produced this interesting map of the Alapahoochee River Watershed I saw on the counter while visiting the USDA FSA office in Valdosta about something unrelated. Curiously, it doesn’t show the actual river nor its tributaries Mud Creek and Grand Bay Creek. But it does show that this watershed includes much of Valdosta, half of Dasher, and all of Lake Park.
I don’t find this map online at the SGRC, but I do find this undated page on Environmental Planning:
The Alapahoochee River Subwatershed is located within the Alapaha River Watershed in South Georgia. The watershed has an approximate land area of 175,423 acres and flows through Lowndes and Echols Counties. According to the State of Georgia’s 2006 Clean Water Act 303(d) List, Mud Creek, a tributary in this subwatershed, was found to be “not supporting” its designated use due to elevated fecal coliform counts. Mud Creek drains the southern half of the City of Valdosta. This area includes a mixture of residential, industrial, silvicultural and agricultural land uses, as well as the Valdosta Mud Creek Pollution Control Plant. Mud Creek joins Grand Bay Creek to form the Alapahoochee River. The Alapahoochee River has fish consumption guidelines for mercury and was found to be “partially supporting” its designated use. This subwatershed is a high recharge area for the Upper Floridian aquifer, from which people in the vicinity get their drinking water. In 2008, the Seven Rivers RC&D Council and its project partners completed the Section 319(h) fund Alapahoochee Watershed Restoration Action Strategy (WRAS). Seven Rivers RC&D Council submitted a U.S. EPA Section 319(d) grant to request funding to:
- Coordination and liaison with Watershed Citizen Groups;
- Watershed Restoration Action Strategy (WRAS) Implementation;
- Install ten (10) demonstration best management practices (BMPs);
- Provide education and outreach
The SGRC was subcontracted by Seven Rivers RC&D Council to serve as Project Coordinator and oversee all activities associated with the project. The total project cost is: $500,000.
A Watershed Restoration Action Strategy (WRAS) has been developed for the Alapahoochee River Subwatershed to educate landowners about water quality and connect them with resources and programs to help abate non-point sources of pollution. For more information or to receive a copy of the WRAS please contact Rich Batten at 229.333.5277.
As the SGRC wrote in its Regionally Important Resources Plan, Southern Georgia, July 2011, on page 48:
Water is the most important natural resource, it is the most basic human need and a valuable asset. Efficient development and optimum utilization of water resources, therefore is of great significance to the over all development of this region. Water resource management is be vitally important to sustain the needs of an increase in this regions population. The resources identified were selected by area stakeholders and found to be essentially important to the region.
The resources selected include the Alapaha River with its tributaries the Willacoochee River, the Alapahoochee River, and the Little Alapaha River, the Little River, the Withlacoochee River, and the Suwannee River, in other words all of the WWALS watersheds.
So the SGRC is a good resource for WWALS and everyone about watershed issues.