Water and Land Use Planning

Water and Land Use are deeply connected resource-wise, but in many communities water and land use are not often planned together. When a community develops its master plan and zoning ordinances, available water supply and sustainable water use should be major considerations. The local water supplier should be deeply involved in advising on community growth planning. Recently the American Planning Association recognized this lack of linkage and created the Water and Planning Network  to bring together water supply planners, land use planners, engineers, and government agencies to discuss ways to better collaborate on water and land use planning issues.

Another issue in water and land use planning is focusing on water resources in the water supply watershed. Water efficiency can help with environmental flows and watershed restoration. The Alliance for Water Efficiency has done seminal work in this area for the Colorado River Basin, focusing on how water efficiency can be used to help augment in-stream flows

A collaborative effort, spearheaded by Laura Allen of Greywater Action, Regina Hirsch of California Onsite Water Association, and Sherry Bryan of Ecology Action, joined by Central Coast Greywater Alliance (CCGA) and the Alliance for Water Efficiency, focused on developing model ordinance language to simplify adoption by local jurisdictions.

Net Blue is a collaborative initiative of the Alliance for Water Efficiency, the Environmental Law Institute, and River Network to support sustainable community growth. Net Blue, a new initiative aiming to offer a practical path to sustainable community development. The three organizations developed a model ordinance template, including a consistent and industry-approved methodology for calculating offsets to ensure desired water savings, which communities can tailor to create a water demand offset approach that meets their needs.