In AFC Fight, Georgia Argues Caps Could Hurt Metro Atlanta

Nov 30, 2016

Boats rest on a dock in the Apalachicola Bay
Credit Jason Tereska / WFSU News

Georgia is wrapping up its case this week in a nearly 30-year-old water fight with Florida and Alabama. The so-called water wars centers on consumption in the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint River system shared by the states.

The U.S. Supreme Court appointed a special master to try and resolve the water dispute between the states. Florida accuses Georgia of mismanaging waters from the Chattahoochee and this starving Apalachicola Bay of the flows needed to sustain North Florida’s oyster industry. Georgia says that’s not true and accuses Florida of mismanaging its resources.

Florida wants a cap on how much water Georgia can use for the metro Atlanta area, but Georgia believes that cap could hurt the region.

According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the special master, Ralph Lancaster Jr., could issue a recommendation to the U.S. Supreme Court early next year. But other states, including Alabama along with some federal agencies, may weigh in.