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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 9. Environment
Agency 25. State Water Control Board
Chapter 610. Groundwater Withdrawal Regulations
8/4/2020

9VAC25-610-100. Water Conservation and Management Plans.

A. Any application to initiate a new withdrawal or expand an existing withdrawal in any groundwater management area or the reapplication at the end of a permit cycle for all permits shall require a water conservation and management plan before the application or reapplication is considered complete. The board shall review all water conservation and management plans and assure that such plans contain all elements required in subsection B of this section. The approved plan shall become an enforceable part of the approved permit.

B. A water conservation and management plan is an operational plan to be referenced and implemented by the permittee. Water conservation and management plans shall be consistent with local and regional water supply plans in the applicant's geographic area developed as required by 9VAC25-780. The water conservation and management plan shall be specific to the type of water use and include the following:

1. For municipal and nonmunicipal public water supplies:

a. Where practicable, the plan should require use of water-saving equipment and processes for all water users including technological, procedural, or programmatic improvements to the facilities and processes to decrease the amount of water withdrawn or to decrease water demand. The goal of these requirements is to assure the most efficient use of groundwater. Information on the water-saving alternatives examined and the water savings associated with the alternatives shall be provided. Water conservation and management plans shall discuss high volume water consumption by users on the system and where conservation measures have previously been implemented and shall be applied. Also, where appropriate, the use of water-saving fixtures in new and renovated plumbing as provided in the Uniform Statewide Building Code (13VAC5-63) shall be identified in the plan;

b. A water loss reduction program, which defines the applicant's leak detection and repair program. The water loss reduction program shall include requirements for an audit of the total amount of groundwater used in the distribution system and operational processes during the first two years of the permit cycle. Implementation of a leak detection and repair program shall be required within one year of the date the permit is issued. The program shall include a schedule for inspection of equipment and piping for leaks;

c. A water use education program that contains requirements for the education of water users and training of employees controlling water consuming processes to assure that water conservation principles are well known by the users of the resource. The program shall include a schedule for information distribution and the type of materials used;

d. An evaluation of water reuse options and assurances that water shall be reused in all instances where reuse is practicable. Potential for expansion of the existing reuse practices or adoption of additional reuse practices shall also be included; and

e. Requirements for mandatory water use reductions during water shortage emergencies declared by the local governing body or water authority consistent with §§ 15.2-923 and 15.2-924 of the Code of Virginia. This shall include, where appropriate, ordinances in municipal systems prohibiting the waste of water generally and requirements providing for mandatory water use restrictions in accordance with drought response and contingency ordinances implemented to comply with 9VAC25-780-120 during water shortage emergencies. The water conservation and management plan shall also contain requirements for mandatory water use restrictions during water shortage emergencies that restricts or prohibits all nonessential uses such as lawn watering, car washing, and similar nonessential residential, industrial, and commercial uses for the duration of the water shortage emergency. Penalties for failure to comply with mandatory water use restrictions shall be included in municipal system plans.

2. For nonpublic water supply applicants - commercial and industrial users:

a. Where applicable, the plan should require use of water-saving equipment and processes for all water users including technological, procedural, or programmatic improvements to the facilities and processes to decrease the amount of water withdrawn or to decrease water demand. The goal of these requirements is to assure the most efficient use of groundwater. Information on the water-saving alternatives examined and the water savings associated with the alternatives shall be provided. Also, where appropriate, the use of water-saving fixtures in new and renovated plumbing as provided in the Uniform Statewide Building Code (13VAC5-63) shall be identified in the plan;

b. A water loss reduction program, which defines the applicant's leak detection and repair program. The water loss reduction program shall include requirements for an audit of the total amount of groundwater used in the distribution system and operational processes during the first two years of the permit cycle. Implementation of a leak detection and repair program shall be required within one year of the date the permit is issued. The program shall include a schedule for inspection of equipment and piping for leaks;

c. A water use education program that contains requirements for the education of water users and training of employees controlling water consuming processes to assure that water conservation principles are well known by the users of the resource. The program shall include a schedule for information distribution and the type of materials used;

d. An evaluation of water reuse options and assurances that water shall be reused in all instances where reuse is practicable. Potential for expansion of the existing reuse practices or adoption of additional reuse practices shall also be included; and

e. Requirements for complying with mandatory water use reductions during water shortage emergencies declared by the local governing body or water authority in accordance with §§ 15.2-923 and 15.2-924 of the Code of Virginia. This shall include, where appropriate, ordinances prohibiting the waste of water generally and requirements providing for mandatory water use restrictions in accordance with drought response and contingency ordinances implemented to comply with 9VAC25-780-120 during water shortage emergencies. The water conservation and management plan shall also contain requirements for mandatory water use restrictions during water shortage emergencies that restricts or prohibits all nonessential uses such as lawn watering, car washing, and similar nonessential industrial and commercial uses for the duration of the water shortage emergency.

3. For nonpublic water supply applicants - agricultural users:

a. Requirements for the use of water-saving plumbing and processes to decrease the amount of water withdrawn or to decrease water demand. Plans submitted for the use of groundwater for irrigation shall identify the specific type of irrigation system that will be utilized, the efficiency rating of the irrigation system in comparison to less efficient systems, the irrigation schedule used to minimize water demand, and the crop watering requirements. Multiple types of irrigation methods may be addressed in the plan. For livestock watering operations, plans shall include livestock watering requirements (per head) and processes to minimize waste of water. These requirements shall assure that the most practicable use is made of groundwater. If these options are not implemented in the plan, information on the water-saving alternatives examined and the water savings associated with the alternatives shall be provided;

b. A water loss reduction program, which defines the applicant's leak detection and repair program. The water loss reduction program shall include requirements for an audit of the total amount of groundwater used in the distribution system and operational processes during the first two years of the permit cycle. Implementation of a leak detection and repair program shall be required within one year of the date the permit is issued. The program shall include a schedule for inspection of equipment and piping for leaks;

c. A water use education program that contains requirements for the training of employees controlling water consuming processes to assure that water conservation principles are well known by the users of the resource. The program shall include a schedule for training employees. This requirement may be met through training employees on water use requirements contained in irrigation management plans or livestock management plans;

d. An evaluation of potential water reuse options and assurances that water shall be reused in all instances where reuse is practicable and not prohibited by other regulatory programs; Potential for expansion of the existing reuse practices or adoption of additional reuse practices shall also be included; and

e. Requirements for mandatory water use reductions during water shortage emergencies and compliance with ordinances prohibiting the waste of water generally. This shall include requirements providing for mandatory water use restrictions in accordance with drought response and contingency ordinances implemented to comply with 9VAC25-780-120 during water shortage emergencies.

f. The permittee may submit portions of Agricultural Management Plans or Irrigation Management Plans developed to comply with requirements of federal or state laws, regulations, or guidelines to demonstrate the requirements of subdivisions B 3 a through d of this section are being achieved.

Statutory Authority

§ 62.1-256 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR680-13-07 § 3.2, eff. September 22, 1993; amended, Volume 30, Issue 05, eff. January 1, 2014.

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