Georgia Water/Regional Plans/Georgia Coastal Area



Comprehensive Plan


Georgia Coastal Comprehensive Plan
Advisory Committee

Coastal Georgia Water and Wastewater Permitting Plan (Dec.2005)


"The Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) has proposed a plan to help Georgia’s coastal communities move toward sustainable management of their groundwater supply, while still meeting the water needs of the rapidly growing region. The draft Coastal Georgia Water and Wastewater Permitting Plan for Managing Saltwater Intrusion (December 2005) is based on the scientific findings of a seven-year study of groundwater use in the 24-county coastal area. The study, called the [Sound Science Initiative], addresses the concern that pumping of groundwater in the region is allowing saltwater to seep into the Floridan aquifer, the principal source of drinking water."[1] "The Plan replaces the Interim Strategy for Managing Salt Water Intrusion in the Upper Floridan Aquifer of Southeast Georgia, and sets forth how EPD will conduct ground and surface water withdrawal permitting, and management and permitting of wastewater discharges."[2]

"The draft plan addresses water management issues in three geographical areas:

  • Chatham, Bryan, Liberty and portions of Effingham counties - the use of Floridan aquifer water will be restricted to total amounts already permitted for the area, with the goal of reducing water withdrawals through time. Under the proposed plan, requests from municipalities in Chatham and Effingham counties that seek additional water from the Floridan aquifer will be considered, with the condition that they honor existing agreements to also tie into Savannah’s surface water pipelines.
  • Glynn County - no more Upper Floridan wells will be allowed in a small area underlying Brunswick due to an existing saltwater plume in the aquifer.
  • The other 19 counties in the coastal region - applications for additional upper Floridan water will be considered for all uses.

However, in all 24 counties, permit holders will need to meet new requirements for water conservation and reuse."Source



State documents

  1. Georgia Environmental Protection Division Coastal Water Study.
  2. Georgia General Assembly, House Resolution 494 of 2005, House Coastal Georgia Sound Science Initiative Study Committee.
  3. Georgia DNR Coastal Resources Division - water quality menu
  4. Water Management Plan for 24 County Coastal Strategy Area [3] (EPD, March 7, 2002)



U.S. Geological Survey website - Coastal Georgia Sound Science Initiative

W. Fred Falls, Larry G. Harrelson, Kevin J. Conlon, and Matthew D. Petke, Hydrogeology, Water Quality, and Water-Supply Potential of the Lower Floridan Aquifer, Coastal Georgia, 1999–2002, Scientific Investigations Report 2005-5124, U.S. Geological Survey, prepared in cooperation with Georgia Department of Natural Resources.

News articles


Data and maps