US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Deputy of Public Affairs Lisa Parker released updated regulations on January 7, 2016 forbidding the use of water from USACE projects for irrigation.
“USACE projects in the Mobile District have multiple purposes which include flood risk reduction, water supply, water quality, wildlife management, recreation, hydropower and navigation. Congress did not include irrigation.”
The laws directing the construction of the dams and reservoirs – laws dating to the 1940s – never authorized irrigation, in any amount, as a project purpose.
Effective January 1, 2016, significant changes to USACE shoreline management will impact property owners, bringing regulations into compliance with federal law. The new rules apply to Allatoona Lake, Lake Sidney Lanier, Lake Seminole, Walter F. George Lake and West Point Lake.
“The new rules now forbid the use of reservoir water for irrigation. This impacts all property owners who have a permit to pump water from the reservoirs for their lawns and gardens and other uses. Water may still be pumped from the reservoirs to wash permitted docks and boats moored at docks so long as the water falls back into the reservoir. This new restriction brings shoreline management into compliance with federal law,” said Parker.
For more information, please contact the Allatoona Office at 678-721-6700, The Lake Lanier Office at 770-945-9531, the Lake Seminole Office at 229-662-2001, the Walter F. George Office at 229-768-2516 or the West Point Office at 706-645-2937.