Guidebook to help towns manage groundwater now available on-line
The Vermont Natural Resources Council recently made available on its website a guidebook designed to help cities and towns in Vermont understand the options they have for managing and protecting their groundwater.
The book, Municipal Planning for Groundwater Protection: Act 199 and Local options for Groundwater Management, is free and can be quickly downloaded from the VNRC website, VNRC.org.
This guide is designed for municipal officials, citizens and anyone else interested in the management of groundwater at the local level in Vermont. It contains:
An overview of groundwater and its properties; a summary of relevant state law relating to groundwater; new ways that municipalities may protect groundwater, and draft groundwater management language for town plans and bylaws for local officials to consider.
This guidebook explains critical elements of Act 199 of 2008. That law created, among other things, new ways for municipalities to protect groundwater. For instance, large groundwater withdrawals must now comply with town and regional plans, and the public has an opportunity to weigh in on a new state permitting process for large withdrawal projects.
“This easy-to-digest, 25-page guide, written for the layperson, summarizes what Act 199 means to municipalities, and therefore, to Vermonters,” said Kim Greenwood, VNRC’s water program director.
Groundwater is the source of drinking water for two-thirds of Vermonters.
Besides giving towns new tools to protect their groundwater if they so choose, Act 199 also declares groundwater to be a public trust resource and clarifies that the Agency of Natural Resources (ANR) is entrusted with the stewardship of our groundwater to be managed in a way that benefits all Vermonters.
To download a copy of the book, click here http://www.vnrc.org/water/hot-issues/vnrc-revises-groundwater-manual/