September 23, 2000  



Ensures protection of Tennessee’s water supply


CHATTANOOGA – Saying that Tennessee’s water supply will be protected, Gov. Don Sundquist today signed the Inter-Basin Water Transfer Act.   "This legislation helps restore our confidence that water will be as available to Tennesseans in the 21st century as it has been for the last 204 years," Sundquist said during the ceremonial bill signing held in Coolidge Park. "If we have water to share, we now have a tool in place to make sure we do so in a thoughtful and informed way."


The act ensures that the state’s water supply will be protected. The state now has the authority to determine whether or not it is appropriate to transfer water from one river basin to another. The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) is in the process of establishing rules to implement the plan and seeking public input for permanent regulations.


Under this law, municipal water providers and those who sell water for public use must obtain a permit from TDEC before they can transfer water between river basins. These are not common transfers now, but are expected to be more frequent as Tennessee grows. The law would not affect farming activity or most industries.

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