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Mission 5 Department of the Interior Ensuring Healthy Watersheds and sustainable secure water supplies
One of the objectives of this goal which I highly support involves the issue of water problems in areas of drought such as California. Managing water and watersheds for this century now and in the future will not be an easy task as identified in the activities to support the need of sustainable and secure water supplies. It is true that climate conditions add to the problems of water supplies across the country. Managing the water supply available and creating a system where all areas have an ample supply to meet their respective needs some say is a problem when the government gets involved. Some of the plans appear to include redistributing water from one state or area to another thereby reducing the water supply in one state and increasing it in another.
It is true that some areas have seen or are seeing flooding based on the amount of rain they receive while other areas such as California has been rain starved for a long time. Some of the activities planned under this goal involve addressing the water problem in California. While it is needed it is unsure whether the activity planned can truly address the problem which plagues the state of California. Enlarging two of the major river basins (Shasta and Upper San Joaquin) is the current plan or at least is part of the actions planned to address water supply and fishery needs.
Another activity under this goal is associated with the Colorado River Basin Management and the plan for it. Without giving details this entity is developing a long term experimental and management plan for this area. What this will involve is unknown at this time. Other activity includes restoring urban rivers currently with nineteen pilot locations of the Urban Water Federal Partnership. These include areas in:
Maryland (Anacostia Watershed)
New York (Bronx and Harlem River Watersheds)
Michigan (Grand River Grand Rapids)
Washington (Green Duwamish Watershed)
Delaware River (Greater Philadelphia)
New Orleans (Lake Pontchartrain Area)
Los Angeles River Watershed
Albuquerque (Middle Rio Grand River)
Massachusetts (Mystic River Watershed)
Indiana (Northwest Indiana)
Passaic River (Newark, New Jersey
Proctor Creek Watershed (Atlanta, Georgia)
San Antonio River (Texas)
South Platte Watershed in Denver, Colorado
Western Lake Erie Basin (Toledo, Ohio)
Meramec and Blue River (Missouri)
Middle Blue River (Missouri)
Martin Pena Canal (Puerto Rico)
It is good that this organization covers one end of the country to the other with their efforts to address water issues. The goal restoring urban rivers is to expand the program and provide additional opportunities to other cities and towns.
Additionally efforts by this government entity are aimed at extending water supplies through conservation. Conservation is a good thing. The goal is to ensure adequate and safe water supplies especially in the western states to provide adequate water resources for agricultural, municipal, industrial and environmental uses in the western states through reclamation water conservations programs.
As the interior department of the government it is responsible to address issues in the states associated with the responsibilities they have as an organization given them through the laws they are entrusted to enforce and manage. There are other activities in which this entity is involved regarding our water resources throughout the country which have not been discussed in this article. Water is a valuable resource which must be protected through proper environmental activities but it should not be at the expense of preventing accessing our energy resources in the process. This department and conversationalists must work with those who want to access these reserves to help create an environment in which we are less dependent on foreign sources of oil. I believes these two entities can work together to address concerns regarding contamination of our water supply to ensure adequate protection is put in place so both entities are happy with the results.