Atlanta And Tri-State Compact Essay, Research Paper
Water is becoming a hard-to-find resource in the southeastern states of Georgia, Florida, and Alabama. The Chattahoochee River is one of the usable water supplies for the three states, and it has now become a such a problem as to sharing the water that a compact was reached in 1997. The compact that was signed by President Clinton involving the Chattahoochee River is called the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint Rivers (ACF) Act. This compact was signed to eventually create the ACF Commissions, which is the group delegated to sort out the issues between Georgia, Alabama, and Florida concerning the water supply of the three states. These issues need to be sorted out soon, for the situation is getting worse as the population in the city of Atlanta grows.
The Chattahoochee is constantly being polluted by the growing population of the city of Atlanta. The city is faced with the problem of using the water without polluting too much of it for the cities that are using it downstream. Alabama is mad because they are getting all the pollution from Atlanta, and Florida is mad because they are getting it from two states.
Water itself is not a scarce resource in the three states, but usable water is. The problem became evident during the droughts in the 1980 s. Even though measures have been taken to try and limit the use of the water basins around Atlanta, the continued growth of population makes the task almost impossible.
Research by the Committee has been underway since the beginning. They have been working with such organizations as the Environmental Protection Agency, the US Geological Survey, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Park Service and Southeastern Power Administration, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The ACF Committees for each state of Georgia, Alabama, and Florida are each researching and doing surveys for different areas to determine the availability of water from other sources, and the agricultural and urban water demands, including the quality of the water and the number of plants using the rivers for power.
Atlanta could be affected drastically based on the completion of these projects. If Atlanta has to cut down on water use, several businesses may need to be shut down, such as places that use water to function (like White Water and other water parks). The may be new water restrictions (which have already been placed in effect) like the Even-Odd Day system, where the addresses with an odd number can only use water for outdoor use on the odd days, and even then only during certain evening and early morning hours. Fields and crops that use a lot of water may dry up, and many companies may find it hard to make a living. A city basically survives on water, and if Atlanta is using it all, they the supply from the rivers for the states of Alabama and Florida may grow thin.
So what can Atlantans do to help preserve water for the places downstream? If every person living in the city can make a collective effort to try and lessen their water use, it could make a considerable difference. It may seem like such a small comparison of water saved when compared to the whole problem, but who knows-maybe the one time you turn off the faucet while brushing your teeth, you could be saving the life of one fish in the Apalachicola Bay.