The Tri-State Water Crisis

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The Tri-State Water Crisis

The Tri-State Water Crisis

ENEC 324Tiffany HuffmanApril 17, 2015

1. What is the issue?The city of Atlanta, Georgia is diverting large amounts of water from Lake Lanier, the reservoir created as a result of the construction of Buford Dam. 2. Why is this bad?Buford Dam has caused a decrease in stream discharge volume downstream. Atlanta's overconsumption of water from Lake Lanier has decreased discharge even more.Furthermore, the 2007 drought in the southeastern US decimated water levels in Lake Lanier.

5. What still needs to be done?* Continue water conservation practices* Install infrastructure to promote water conservation and reuse, such as gray water infrastructure, low-flow faucets and toilets, etc.* Find alternate water sources to preserve downstream flow on the Chattahoochee River

3. What are the implications?A. Local: Lake Lanier's water levels dropped by more than 15 feet as a result of the 2007 drought, causing a critical water crisis for Atlanta B. Regional: There are massive regional impacts. Florida and Alabama, who lie downstream on the Chattahoochee River, are experiencing severe ecological repercussions from decreased stream discharge, causing the tri-state water warsC. Global: Increased tensions over water in the southeast United States could implicate increasing water tensions worldwide

4. What is Atlanta doing?* Water Conservation Implementation Plan* Water Supply and Water Conservation Plan* Grass Roots Water Conservation Plan

Hydrograph: After effects of the construction of Buford Dam in 1956 on streamflow

Image: Location of Lake Lanier/Buford Dam, the Chattahoochee River and Atlanta

Video: Effects of 2007 drought on Lake Lanier

Image: Buford Dam and portion of Lake Lanier

Graph: Water usage in Metro Atlanta from 2002 - 2012


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