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Restoring Great Lakes Basin Water Through the Use of Conservation

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					Restoring Great Lakes Basin Water Through the Use of Conservation Credits and an Integrated Water Balance Analysis System
Funding Source: The Great Lakes Protection Fund Total Grant Amount: $540,000 Project Duration: 24 months Starting Date: January 2005 Principal Investigators
Dr. Jon Bartholic The Institute of Water Research & Dr. Sandra S. Batie Dept. of Agricultural Economics Michigan State University
©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved

Institutional Context
•Annex 2001---Regional Water Policy Framework •Water Legacy---Michigan •TMDLs/ Other Conservation Policies •Watershed Management Framework

©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved

Project Goals
1. Provide a “road-map” for informed public decisions with respect to the permitting of water withdrawals to create a “market” for water conservation credits which:

• Rewards existing land owners for water conservation efforts • Results in protection and restoration of vulnerable water ecosystems • Minimizes litigation costs

©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved

Project Goal (continued)

2. Select an actual vulnerable area in a watershed to demonstrate, hypothetically, an actual water conservation credit system

©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved

A Vulnerable Area is an area where any increases of water withdrawal may impact the aquifer and the ecological functions that groundwater provides

©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved

Expected Outcomes & Associated Products
• A road map to help implement a Water Conservation Credits Market • Water Conservation Credits System --- a watershed for project demonstration • Watershed Balance Analysis System --- water resources information system to support decision making • A User Assistance Interface and a Water Credit Transaction Web-Site --- end water users/decision makers

• Advisory Team --- representatives from large public& private water use groups/conservation groups/state government agencies.

©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved

Study Process
• Gathering Inputs for Development & Improvement
Inputs from Advisory Team Members

• Developing a Decision Support System
Water Balance Analysis System – integration of three hydrologic models

• Developing a “Conservation Credits System”
Laws &regulations, institutions, policy development, credit assignment and practices, education monitoring, dispute resolution mechanisms, and interaction with policy makers

• Developing a User Assistance Interface and a Web Site
Central data base for decision support system

• Implementing a Conservation Credits System
Vulnerability Mapping, Site Selection, a Hypothetical Demonstration Project

©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved

Water Conservation Credits Implementation Process
Developing a Decision Support System “Water Balance Analysis System” Gathering Inputs for Development & Improvement Inputs from Advisory Team Comprised of Reps. From: Surface Hydrology Model Aquifer Model  Environmental/Conservation Organization  Business/Industry/Utilities  Agriculture  State Planners State government Citizens Developing a “Conservation Credits System”  Law, regulations, and institutions  System development  Credits assignment vs. Water conservation practices • Monitoring • Dispute Resolution • Education/interaction with policymaker

Aquatic Ecosystem Model

Database Integration
Developing a User Assistance Interface User Assistance Interface Implementing a Water Conservation Credits System Developing a Web Site for Transactions User Assistance Interface

Site Selection
Vulnerability Mapping

Web-Site for Transactions

Central Tracking Database

Conservation Credits System Implementation (A Hypothetical Demonstration Project)

©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved

©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved

New Water Users (Large Water Withdrawal) Or/and Existing Water Users (Large Increased Withdrawal) Potential Credit Seeker

Vulnerable Area

Existing Water Users •Farmers •land owners •Industries •Business Potential Credit Provider

Willingness to purchase water credits to “Offset” an increment of water use

Water Conservation Practices (BMPs)

Willingness to reduce water use to “Offset” an increment of water use

UAI/Website

Center for exchanging “Offset” credits
©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved

Current Advisory Team Members
Representatives from:
Consumers Energy Michigan Turf Grass Foundation Ice Mountain Great Lakes National Resource Center, National Wildlife Federation National Association of Conservation Districts Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

Trout Unlimited Tip of the Mitt Watershed Council
Michigan Farm Bureau Public Sector Consultants Inc. Michigan United Conservation Clubs

Michigan Department of Agriculture Michigan Department of Environmental Quality
Office of the Great Lakes, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Michigan Municipal League Michigan Manufacturers Association

©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved

What we do…
Our project is to provide an information based decision support system to inform policy decisions related to the Implementation of a Water Conservation Credits System.

What We don’t do…
Support any activities of water user groups in withdrawing water in a specific watershed or transferring outside the Great Lakes Basin.

©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved

For more information about the project.. Visit our web-site at… http://www.iwr.msu.edu/research/projects.html

©2002 Institute of Water Research, all rights reserved


				
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