State Water Resources Plan

The final State Water Resources Plan is complete and available to the public.  The State Plan was developed based on information provided by Virginia's counties, cities, and towns in response to the Water Supply Planning Regulation (9 VAC 25-780).  The local and regional water supply plans include information about existing water use and sources of supply, future projections of population and water demand, anticipated water supply deficits, potential sources of future water supply, and current efforts to use water efficiently.

In addition to information from the local plans, the State Plan includes an analysis of how meeting future water needs may affect key water uses such as pollution assimilation, fish and wildlife habitat, and other existing downstream users.  The Plan takes an extensive look at surface water and groundwater sources and includes an assessment of the capacity of these sources to meet the projected water demand in 2040.

One aspect of the State Plan implementation currently under development is a web-based, interactive platform that will enable localities to enter water supply planning information directly into the system and receive real-time, dynamic responses to inquiries regarding the sustainability of water resources.  It is anticipated that this interface will provide the basis for more efficient data collection which, in turn, will improve DEQ's ability to provide localities and regions with analysis on water resource conflicts that could impact development of their future water supplies.

The Plan will be subject to incremental revision at five-year intervals as DEQ, localities, and other stakeholders provide input through ongoing water supply planning efforts.

Components of the State Plan can be accessed at the links below:

Cover Letter from DEQ Director David Paylor

Cover, Preface, Acknowledgements,Table of Contents, Lists of Figures and Tables

Executive Summary

Acronyms, Abbreviations, and Glossary

Chapter 1:  Virginia's Water Resources Planning Process

Chapter 2:  Virginia's Collaborative Water Management Framework

Chapter 3:  Virginia's Environmental Resources

Chapter 4:  A Comparison of Water Supply and Water Use across the Commonwealth

Chapter 5:  Assessing the Long Term Sustainability of Water Resources

Chapter 6:  Water Supply Challenges and Recommendations

Introduction to Appendices

Appendix A:  Water Supply Plans and Participating Localities

Appendix B:    Albemarle-Chowan River Basin Summary

                         Chesapeake Bay-Small Coastal Basin Summary

                         James River Basin Summary

                         New River Basin Summary

                          Potomac-Shenandoah River Basin Summary

                          Rappahannock River Basin Summary

                          Roanoke River Basin Summary

                          Tennessee-Big Sandy River Basin Summary

                          York River Basin Summary

Appendix C:  Local/Regional Water Supply Plan Reviews and Conditions of Approval

Appendix D:  Snapshots of Water Resources by Locality

Accomack County, Albemarle County, Alexandra, Alleghany County, Amelia County, Amherst County, Appomattox County, Arlington County, Augusta County, Bath County, Bedford County, Bland County, Botetourt County, Bristol, Brunswick County, Buchanan County, Buckingham County, Buena Vista, Campbell County, Caroline County, Carroll County, Charles City County, Charlotte County, Charlottesville, Chesapeake, Chesterfield County, Clarke County, Colonial Heights, Covington, Craig County, Culpeper County, Cumberland County, Danville, Dickenson County, Dinwiddie County, Emporia, Essex County, Fairfax City, Fairfax County, Falls Church, Fauquier County, Floyd County, Fluvanna County, Franklin City, Franklin County, Frederick County, Fredericksburg, Galax, Giles County, Gloucester County, Goochland County, Grayson County, Greene County, Greensville County, Halifax County, Hampton, Hanover County, Harrisonburg, Henrico County, Henry County, Highland County, Hopewell, Isle of Wight County, James City County, King and Queen County, King George County, King William County, Lancaster County, Lee County, Lexington, Loudoun County, Louisa County, Lunenburg County, Lynchburg, Madison County, Manassas, Manassas Park, Martinsville, Mathews County, Mecklenburg, County, Middlesex County, Montgomery County, Nelson County, New Kent County, Newport News, Norfolk, Northampton County, Northumberland County, Norton, Nottoway County, Orange County, Page County, Patrick County, Petersburg, Pittsylvania County, Poquoson, Portsmouth, Powhatan County, Prince Edward County, Prince George County, Prince William County, Pulaski County, Radford, Rappahannock County, Richmond City, Richmond County, Roanoke City, Roanoke County, Rockbridge County, Rockingham County, Russell County, Salem, Scott County, Shenandoah County, Smyth County, Southampton County, Spotsylvania County, Stafford County, Staunton, Suffolk, Surry County, Sussex County, Tazewell County, Virginia Beach, Warren County, Washington County, Waynesboro, Westmoreland County, Williamsburg, Winchester, Wise County, Wythe County, York County

Appendix E:  Public Comments and Next Steps

Anyone with questions about the State Water Resources Plan or who has trouble downloading the documents should contact Tammy Stephenson, Office of Water Supply, at 540-562-6828 or tammy.stephenson@deq.virginia.gov

The Concept for the State Water Resources Plan includes the following:

  • To put local and regional plans together with relevant state water resource information in one place;
  • To provide a qualitative and quantitative description of water resources in Virginia based upon readily accessible data, and guidance on the use of that information in the decisions that face the Plan's users;
  • To provide a statewide snapshot of what the water supply needs are, where they are met, and our best estimate of the resource's ability to meet additional needs;
  • To manage water resources to ensure their continued availability, while also maximizing environmental and economic benefits;
  • To provide an on-going process that evolves in response to changing conditions over time;
  • To identify areas of the state where multiple users want the same source for their water needs;
  • To identify existing areas of the state where water availability may be insufficient now or in the near future based on these needs;
  • To try and find resolutions to conflicts through regional solutions, alternative sources, or some other option;
  • To identify a locality's needs and the constraints to meeting these needs;
  • To see where there may be willing partners for regional solutions and where these solutions may be most practical; and
  • To provide a useful economic development tool by identifying areas with available water supplies, and areas where water needs for promoting tourism and recreation are identified.

Status of Virginia's Water Resources

The Office of Water Supply prepares an Annual Water Resources Report for publication each October that summarizes the status of Virginia's Water Resources and provides details regarding the use of water within the Commonwealth during the previous year.

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Virginia Department of
Environmental Quality
P.O. Box 1105
Richmond, VA 23218
(804) 698-4000


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