The Alcovy Protection Plan: A Regional Approach to Watershed Protection

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Ruhlman, Melanie B.
Wenger, Seth
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The Alcovy River Watershed Protection Project is the first comprehensive regional land use and water quality study of the Alcovy River watershed. Multiple regulatory requirements created the need for a watershed study that overlapped jurisdictional and political boundaries. Current and future land use information and hydrologic and water quality data were obtained for the watershed. A water quality model was developed to estimate future water quality as a function of anticipated land use changes. The model was run for existing and future (2020) conditions. Various implementation options were superimposed onto the default future scenario to predict the effect that certain policy tools would have on water quality. Model results suggested that the single most effective tool for protecting water quality is an improved stormwater ordinance that has provisions for downstream water quality and channel protection. An ideal watershed protection plan is recommended that includes a combination of policy and incentive-based land management tools.
Sponsored and Organized by: U.S. Geological Survey, Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Natural Resources Conservation Service, The University of Georgia, Georgia State University, Georgia Institute of Technology
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