One purpose of the meeting was to gather stakeholder input about a comprehensive water management plan for the state. The consensus is that Alabama needs a water plan — and it needs one soon.

“We’re going to have to get a handle on this, and I think it’s going to have to happen quickly,” says Marlon Cook, director of Groundwater Assessment Program for the Geological Survey of Alabama. Cook spoke to Paul Hollis for an article in the Southeast Farm Press.

Glen Zorn, assistant commissioner of Agriculture and Industries, agrees a plan needs to happen fast, but not before water-use assessments are completed. Such assessments aren’t cheap.

Already more than $3 million has been spent on assessments — “and we’re still not there,” he told the newspaper, noting the state needs “a lot of money to assess the situation before we can start making policy.”

Colorado and Georgia spent more than $15 million and $30 million, respectively, on their water assessments, Cook told the newspaper.


State Sen. Arthur Orr says the legislature likely will not consider a comprehensive water plan until at least 2015. As for the incentive that he helped sponsor, farmers can claim the tax credit over five years from the date a qualifying project is completed.  FG

—Summarized by FG staff from Paul Hollis article in Southeast Farm Press