Update 2023-09-14: Draft 2023 North Florida Regional Water Supply Plan (NFRWSP) workshop 2023-09-21.
Sent as PDF.
January 31, 2023
To: SRWMD, SJRWMD, email@example.com
Re: Water budget, limit water withdrawals, do better aquifer recharge, NFRWSP
Dear Water Management Districts,
Thank you for the opportunity for public input.
At the November 15, 2022, public meeting about the North Florida Regional Water Supply Plan (NFRWSP), I thanked the presenters for all the hard work they had put into the details, such as in the North Florida-Southeast Georgia (NFSEG) regional groundwater flow model .
I have some issues with another level. I noticed repeated assertions in the public meeting that demand or projected demand are just taken as givens. So basically anybody who wants to build a golf course, or start another titanium mine, or plant almond trees that need lots of water, that’s just a given, that’s demand.
It seems strange.
You’ve gone to a great deal of trouble to compile a water budget in the sense of here’s evapotranspiration, here’s aquifer recharge, and so forth.
But all we see for a plan to deal with that is changing MFLs. Which seems to translate to lowering the limits for the water levels. I didn’t see anything about planning to limit or review use permits for water withdrawal.
I know I heard something about, well, that’s the regulatory arm. But this plan includes aquifer recharge projects, such as I believe there’s a 48-inch pipe planned to go from the Suwannee River to recharge the Ichetucknee headsprings. See Appendix J from 2016. https://northfloridawater.com/watersupplyplan/documents/draft/Appendix_J.pdf
More detail: https://wwals.net/?p=15981
Four years later, SRWMD added a plan for another such pipe, from Branford. https://wwals.net/?p=55981
There are much simpler ways to recharge the aquifer than these very expensive water pipelines, as Practicing Geologist Dennis J. Price pointed out back in 2016. https://wwals.net/?p=54126
Drill wells at the bottom of planted pine ditches.
Planning aquifer recharge water pipelines is a policy. A bad policy, but still a policy.
Limiting permits is also a policy. Limiting new withdrawal permits and phasing down quantities of older permits should be in this plan.
I hope that there may be some change in course possible at this point. Because I really wouldn’t want all your hard work to just go towards further reducing MFLs and decreasing water levels for the springs and rivers.
For the rivers and the aquifer,
John S. Quarterman,
- WWALS NFRWSP comment letter of December 5, 2016 https://wwals.net/?p=27688
- Proposal for the Recharge of the Upper Floridan Aquifer —D.J. Price P.G. 2016-11-14 https://wwals.net/?p=54126