Source Water Protection in the 21st Century
July 14, 2015
As news arises of drought, harmful algal blooms, and chemical spills across the nation, we are regularly reminded of the need to protect drinking water in our cities and communities. Every day, land use decisions affect future drinking water supplies, either intentionally or inadvertently. By protecting sources of drinking water through regular planning activities and practices like green infrastructure, we can build resilient, healthy, and beautiful communities.
The Source Water Collaborative formed in 2006 with the goal to combine the strengths and tools of a diverse set of member organizations to act now, and protect sources of drinking water for generations to come. As a member of the collaborative, APA works with partners like the Association of State Drinking Water Administrators, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Forest Service, Smart Growth America, and many others to help communities across the nation protect sources of drinking water.
In this session, members of the Source Water Collaborative:
- Presented tools and resources that planners can use to integrate source water protection into visioning, zoning, and beyond.
- Showcased several cities that are building plans to safeguard their water supplies while engaging local residents and beautifying neighborhoods.
- Offered tips for working with state and local partners as part of a collaborative group to protect drinking water — and find help, expertise, and resources.
- Highlighted critical areas of key action needed to protect drinking water into the future.
- Discussed strategies for funding projects, finding help and technical assistance, leveraging data from local partners like drinking water utilities and industry, and more.