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Re: SG-W:/ Protecting drinking water supply

A lot of areas, particularly out East, have purchased watershed areas (or 
secured them through conservation easements) for the primary purpose of 
providing clean drinking water supplies.  In Michigan, however, it seems that 
we are somewhat spoiled by virtue of having the Great Lakes to provide much 
of our drinking water needs for a great many communities.  The obvious link 
between clean water and clean land just hasn't registered with many of our 
political "leaders".

I am unaware of any communities in Michigan which have protected important 
watershed regions for the primary purpose of securing clean water supplies.  
A number of communities have protected limited areas where community wells 
have been drilled--but that is quite different than protecting vast areas 
which serve as the natural filters for the water.  Of course, out East there 
is a greater reliance upon using reservoirs to provide drinking water; 
whereas in Michigan, those communities without a direct connection to one of 
the Great Lakes usually rely on ground water (out of sight, out of mind) as 
opposed to surface water.  

Jack Smiley
Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy

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