Delaware • New Jersey • Pennsylvania
New York • United States of America
Pennsylvania residents whose livelihood and health depend on abundant water supply recall not so long ago the seven years of drought that challenged the stability of the Commonwealth's economy and the health of its ecosystem. On top of this, the current State Water Plan is more than 25 years old, and contains no information to address critical water needs.
With this in mind, Act 220 was signed into law on December 16, 2002, and requires that the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) develop a State Water Plan within five years as well as provide regular five-year updates in subsequent years. This plan will report on how much water Pennsylvanians have, how much water they use, and, more importantly, what their future water requirements will be based on population and development trends.
Under Act 220, registration and reporting of water withdrawals from public water suppliers, utility companies, agriculture, industry and commercial enterprises and others are important components in assessing and projecting existing and future water demands and needs that will be used to identify where demands exceed available resources. This will be an important tool for county and municipal planners statewide. Act 220 affords the diversified water registrants the opportunity to make their water needs known to local and state officials. With the advancement of development and the ever-increasing demand for water, this is a way to help protect the Commonwealth’s future water supply.
If you reside in Pennsylvania and use over 10,000 gallons of water per day on average in any 30-day period, you must register your water sources. You do not need to register if your only source of water is through a public water supply. Public water suppliers are required to register their sources regardless of what amount of water is used.
Pa. Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP) Secretary John Hanger signed the new state water plan on March 26, 2009.
A management plan was developed for the Upper Wissahickon Creek Watershed to demonstrate the Critical Area Resource Planning (CARP) process established under Pa. Act 220 and also the Special Area Management Planning (SAMP) process recommended by the Pennsylvania Coastal Zone Management Program.