To accompany Lake Appreciation month this past July, Source Water Collaborative member North American Lake Management Society (NALMS) released their position on source water protection (SWP). Founded in 1980, NALMS’s mission is to “to forge partnerships among citizens, scientists, and professionals to foster the management and protection of lakes and reservoirs for today and tomorrow.” The primary focus of NALMS is on lake management and land use issues on a watershed level. Through educational outreach and participation from a wide range of professionals including scientists, lake managers, academics, and anyone interested in lakes, NALMS’s core activities involve land, streams, wetlands, and estuaries.
Essential to NALMS’s mission is the protection of source water. NALMS’s position on SWP is that any body of water “designated as a drinking water source should be managed so that the protection of source water quality is the priority, and other designated uses do not infringe or impair this use.” NALMS’s support of SWP policy focuses on:
- The multi-barrier approach to providing safe drinking water;
- Water supply is the highest priority use of the water body when the water body is used as source water;
- SWP programs should identify management strategies that minimize pollutant runoff and loadings;
- SWP programs should manage watersheds to prevent point and nonpoint sources of pollution, storm impacts, and emerging contaminants from degrading water quality;
- Water utilities should delineate their watersheds to identify potential sources of contamination;
- Water utilities and their customers benefit from SWP and should financially contribute to their SWP program.
For more information of NALMS source water protection policy, visit: https://www.nalms.org/nalms-position-on-source-water-protection/