Drinking Water Protection
Safe drinking water starts at the source.
West Virginians get their drinking water from sources like rivers, lakes, reservoirs, streams, and groundwater. The cleaner our drinking water sources, the cleaner our drinking water.
The more polluted our drinking water sources are, the more expensive it is to treat the water, burdening both water utilities and their customers. More importantly, the more polluted our drinking water sources, the greater the human health risk.
Following the West Virginia water crisis in 2014, the legislature passed a law requiring public water systems that utilize water sources easily susceptible to contamination (rivers, lakes, reservoirs, and streams) to have a Source Water Protection Plan.
These plans include management strategies to prevent contamination of drinking water sources, and encourage the public to participate in protection efforts.
The Safe Water for West Virginia program facilitates collaboration between utilities and their communities to actively implement Source Water Protection Plans and protect drinking water sources.
Looking to take a deeper dive into source water protection? Check out these resources to learn more.
- Drinking Water Protection – A Citizen’s Guide to Getting Involved to educate community stakeholders and prepare them to take on a leadership role in source water protection planning.
- Source Water Protection Plan Implementation Guide with information on what these plans entail, how they overlap with Watershed Based Plans, and ways the community can work together with utilities to protect drinking water supplies.
- Stormwater & You: An Outreach Toolkit for Watershed Groups, which was designed to help watershed organizations improve water quality, reach new members and build capacity within their organization.
- The Importance of Safe Drinking Water for Protecting Women’s and Children’s Health details some of the dangerous toxins water quality standards protects us from and why removal of drinking water designation is a bad idea.
- Video Library to explore and learn more about water in West Virginia and how WV Rivers and what we can all do to keep it safe.