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Run-Of-River New Standard For Waterbury Dam

Last week, the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation issued a water quality certification governing the future operations of Green Mountain Power’s Waterbury hydroelectric project.

The decision calls for the Waterbury Reservoir to be maintained at the current, higher summertime level year-round, and says flows should be managed to “more closely mirror the natural flow of the Little River.” However, that requirement won’t go into effect until needed work on the dam is completed.

The department’s water quality certification is part of Green Mountain Power’s federal re-licensing of its hydroelectric operation at the Waterbury Dam. And despite the fact that the decision limits the utility’s ability to manipulate river flows, Green Mountain Power applauded the state’s decision.

“We are pleased with this decision, which balances all interests, including our on-going generation of clean renewable hydropower, protecting the local environment and recreational uses,” said Josh Castonguay, GMP director of generation and renewable innovation.

draft version of the decision was issued last month, following a public hearing held in Waterbury in October. A second public hearing was held Dec. 6, drawing comments from community members and several groups that use the Waterbury Reservoir and the Little River.

Among the groups submitting written comments to the state was the Friends of the Waterbury Reservoir. That group was supportive of the draft decision stating, “Consistent with the Friends of Waterbury Reservoir’s mission, vision, and core values, and after considerable research and consultation with experts, we support the maintenance of the reservoir’s average year-round water level at so-called ‘summertime level’ of an average of 589.5 feet, with adjustments made as required and appropriate as determined by the agencies and officers who are responsible for making decisions regarding flood prevention and mitigation.”

In addition, Friends of the Waterbury Reservoir member Fred Abraham commented at the Dec. 6 public hearing, “We support the position that keeps the water levels up year-round. We believe that the main basis for doing this is the ecological integrity of … the Waterbury Reservoir  and the river basin. And we see that’s the state’s goal as well, so we’re happy to see that as their goal.”

Other groups commenting in favor of the proposed run-of-river standard included the Vermont Natural Resources Council, Friends of the Winooski River, Central Vermont Trout Unlimited, and Mad Dog Trout Unlimited.

However, some paddlers were not happy with the prospect of loosing whitewater runs. Written comments were submitted by American Whitewater  and cosigned by Vermont Paddlers Club and New England FLOW.

Bob Nasdor,  Northeast stewardship director for American Whitewater, testified at the Dec. 6 hearing that the change to flow-of-river management ignores a major recreational use of the waterway.

“We believe that you go too far in the draft water quality certification with too little basis and that the elimination of all scheduled whitewater boating opportunities is unsupported by any studies or science on the Little River,” said Nasdor.

In a press release, the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation stated its decision “ensures that dam operations are conducted in a manner that protects fishing, swimming, boating and other recreational uses of both the Waterbury Reservoir and Little River. The decision also ensures that the dam will continue to serve its primary purpose of flood control.”

The dam was built in the 1930s for flood control purposes, but has also been used for hydroelectric generation for much of its existence.

“We are pleased to be issuing a water quality certification that meets our obligations to protect water quality, while ensuring continued access for the recreational uses of the Waterbury Reservoir and the Little River that are loved by many thousands of Vermonters,” Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner David Mears said in a statement when the decision was finalized.…

The Major Benefits Of Having A Water Filtration System In Your House

How to Choose the Whole House Water Filter System for Your Home

The quality of water that we drink, wash our hair and body with, as well as that we use to clean fruits and veggies, has a huge effect on our health. Nowadays, to make sure that the water we use is clean, treatment facilities add chlorine to it, which can be damaging as it may contain harmful bacteria and chemicals that have a negative effect on our health and wellbeing.

Tap water passes through water treatment facilities, however, it can get easily contaminated the moment it leaves the treatment facilities. Therefore, the best way to make sure that the water you consume is clean and hasn’t been contaminated is by installing a water filtration system.

In this article, we will provide you with the major benefits of having a water filtration system in your house.

Safe to Drink

Installing a water filtration system will ensure that the water you drink is clean, free of contaminants, and safe to drink compared to those coming from water treatment plants without going through a home filtration system. There are many types of contaminants that can be found in water coming straight from these treatment facilities, including chlorine, lead, and fluoride.

However, you can avoid the consumption of all these toxins by installing a water filtration system in your house. That way, you and your loved ones will get your daily supply of drinking water without any health risks.

Healthy Skin

Substances that can be found in water, like chlorine and metals, can make skin conditions get worse. Moreover, children are more prone to aggravated skin conditions due to washing with water coming straight from treatment plants. For this reason, you need to make sure that you choose the right filtration system to ensure that your house is well provided with clean and pure water.

The team at recommends that you seek the help of certified experts to assess the water in your house and help you get rid of all impurities and toxins it contains. An easy way you can validate that they are certified is by checking their website. That way, you will ensure that anyone in the house who has eczema or any other skin condition will not suffer from more damage to their skin.

Cutting Costs

Your plumbing system can get damaged by heavy metals and minerals that are found in unfiltered water. However, installing a water filtration system in your home will reduce plumbing repairs, which will result in reduced repair bills as well. Other than the pipes in your house, some home appliances can get damaged by unfiltered water, like the fridge, washing machine, and dishwasher. Repairing or replacing these appliances can cost you a lot of money! Therefore, to cut costs and reduce your monthly bills, you need a reliable home filtration system to protect your pipes and home appliances from damage.

Preserves the Environment

Drinking bottled water will add to the already huge amounts of plastic waste our planet is suffering from. Plastic is endangering the existence of many marine creatures, as it can take up to five hundred years to disintegrate! Installing a home filtration system is a huge contribution to saving the environment from more plastic waste. Although it might seem like a small contribution, it is absolutely not! The amount of plastic bottles produced and thrown away is way too much than our planet can take!

Fewer Scum Deposits

Under Sink Systems - Water Filtration Systems | The Home Depot Canada

Washing your clothes with unfiltered water that comes straight from the treatment plants can leave deposits on them over time. Moreover, if you use them to wash your clothes and dishes, it increases the number of scum build-ups sticking on your belongings that cause allergies and skin rashes. On the other hand, using filtered water to clean the floor and wash your clothes and dishes will reduce the number of scum buildups and deposits sticking to them.

There is absolutely no reason to consume or use unfiltered water as it poses risk to everyone’s health. If you think about it, filtered water is safer to drink as the filtration system removes the contaminants and toxins that it might be carrying. Filtered water can help you have better skin as well and ensures that any skin condition doesn’t get worse. Moreover, using filtered water will reduce the use of disposable plastic bottles, which is a major contribution to saving our planet. If you think that installing a filtration system is expensive, you are mistaken, as it will reduce your plumbing bills and protect your home appliances from damage. Water is life, so you need to make sure that you and your family are drinking clean and pure water.…

Water Storage: The Pros and Cons of Dams & Reservoirs

Water Goes With the Flow

When you turn on a garden hose, it doesn’t take long for the water to come out. This is because water is fluid and mobile – it likes to move! Water isn’t fond of staying in one place. Even if it seems to be motionless, there is a lot going on behind the scenes that you can’t see. Some of the surface water is evaporating into the air; some of the water at the very bottom is seeping into the ground below. And, even the water you do see is constantly moving ever so slightly.

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How and Why We Store Water

As difficult as it is to prevent water from moving, it’s a top priority in the United States for several reasons. One of the most important reasons is flood prevention. Flooding is a natural, cyclical process that carries nutrient-rich sediments over large areas, which is beneficial to human agriculture and natural ecosystems.

These floodplains not only border beautiful waterways, but also provide a water supply and very fertile soils. These factors have drawn people to riverbanks for hundreds of years, and while flooding can be beneficial, it often destroys homes and livelihoods as well.

To prevent flooding, dikes and levees have been constructed. These are raised mounds of earth along riverbanks that hold water behind them. Dikes and levees are usually made of natural materials and build upon the ground that is already present, and the size of the mound depends on the water body behind it.

But, while dikes and levees are meant to prevent flooding, they may, in fact, add fuel to the fire. The flooding of New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 was a result of failed levees – the water had built up so much behind the levees that once they broke, that accumulated water caused a catastrophic flooding event.

Water is also stored behind dams, which are obstructions placed along a waterway to stop the flow of water. This creates a reservoir, or a place where water is stored and prevents the water from continuing downstream. There are several benefits to damming waterways, such as flood prevention and providing a source of water for human consumption and agricultural irrigation.

Dam reservoirs also generate hydroelectric power, which is energy generated from the water turning turbine blades as it passes through the dam. Water that is stored in a reservoir can provide a steady, predictable amount of electricity that not only is inexpensive, but also doesn’t produce emissions like coal and gas do.

Though not a priority for building a water-holding structure, creating water reservoirs does provide new recreational opportunities. Lakes that are created behind dams, dikes and levees are often popular areas for fishing, boating and swimming.…