Disclaimer: I grew up in Atlanta and spent a lot of time at my aunt's house at Lake Lanier. So this stuff is especially interesting to me.
Florida backs away from water war truce(more here)
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Published on: 11/09/07
One week after it appeared Georgia, Alabama and Florida had reached a temporary truce in their latest fight over water, Florida notified federal officials that it objected to a proposal to keep more water in Lake Lanier.
On Thursday night, Florida sent a letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, opposing the short-term plan to reduce releases into Florida from Lanier.
The corps, which proposed the reductions, said stemming the flow downstream could help extend metro Atlanta's water supply by as much as two years. That could be long enough to get the region through the historic drought that started in spring 2006.
But Florida's objection to the proposed cuts could be moot.
The final decision still rests with Fish and Wildlife, which has until next Thursday to determine whether federally protected mussels and a fish species could survive with less water. If the service approves the changes, the corps could begin phasing in the reductions immediately.
Florida would then have the option of asking a federal judge to keep the waters flowing from Lake Lanier at their current levels.
For metro Atlantans, the stakes are high: If drought conditions don't improve, the state could be forced to take steps, such as rationing water, that haven't been seen even in the arid West, such as Southern California or Las Vegas.