Rivanna Water and Sewer Authority



) introduced a

draft version

of a new drought response and contingency plan at their Board of Directors meeting on April 24, 2006.  While all the local reservoirs are full and neither Charlottesville nor Albemarle are currently facing drought conditions, lagging levels of rainfall over the winter and early spring have raised concern about possible future drought scenarios.  The new drought plan sets out to define water restriction targets and better coordinate drought management between the City and County.  The three stages of the new plan include an alert, which calls for voluntary water conservation; a warning, which demands a minimum of a 5% water use reduction; and a declared emergency, which requires a minimum 20% reduction.

The RWSA board hopes the plan will move through the various entities voting on it by the end of June.  Once agreed upon, it will be up to the City and County to separately define how to meet those reduction targets.  The public will also have opportunity to join in the discussion for comments.  Charlottesville Tomorrow will post dates and locations of those meetings on our


when they are announced.

Also discussed in the meeting was the reactivation of the

South Fork Hydro Plant

, which has been shut down since 2003.  As of April 17, 2006 the electricity generating facility has been in continuous operation and is expected to save RWSA $100,000 annually on electricity, assuming sufficient water is flowing over the dam.

Listen to podcast:

Download RWSA20060424.mp3

Andrew Owen


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