The Woodstock Conservation Commission has been working with Marc Cohen of the Atlantic States Rural Water and Wastewater Association on strategies to protect Woodstock’s drinking water supply.
Under Section 7-131a of the Connecticut General Statutes, a Conservation Commission can inventory natural resources and formulate watershed management and drought management plans. The WCC conducted an extensive natural resource inventory before developing A Plan of Open Space and Conservation (APOSC). One of the goals in the APOSC was to “Establish Aquifer Overlay Protection Zones” to protect existing and future underground water supplies.
One of our most important natural resources is a potentially high-yielding aquifer in the southeastern part of Woodstock. While the Town of Woodstock is not legally required to do this, it is important as a town to carefully consider the types of land uses that should be allowed over this vital resource. Our businesses and citizens may need to rely on the source of water for future growth.
While no large public wells are currently withdrawing water from this aquifer, and as Town of Putnam is currently permitted to withdraw water from Little River in South Woodstock, it is unlikely a large public well would be permitted at this time. However, there are indications that the Town of Putnam may reduce their reliance on Little River as a drinking water source as they improve the water filtration system at their Park Street well field. Either way, the water quality in this aquifer is key to water quality in the Little River.
Aquifers situated on stratified drift deposits are highly vulnerable to contamination from certain aboveground land uses. Therefore, the WCC believes it would be wise to review land use regulations over the aquifer’s major recharge areas, and evaluate whether we should further limit certain activities above these areas that could degrade water quality over the long term. The WCC will be holding a series of meetings to discuss and review this project. Our goal is to develop a set of draft regulations to submit to the Woodstock Planning & Zoning Commission for review.
Watch this very good Video on WHAT IS AN AQUIFER (An aquifer is a body of permeable rock or gravel that can contain and transmit groundwater)