Cullman looking for long term water solution - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Cullman looking for long term water solution

This is where Cullman gets their drinking water.

A D4 drought emergency has left Lake Catoma 25 feet below normal and the future doesn't look good.

"It may very well extend into 2008," says J. Steve Newton.

Even with a 15 percent reduction in water usage, there's a major need for a new source.

Several options were considered, including a 31 mile pipeline to the Tennessee River, but engineers, like Tom Harwell, the project manager, have a simpler solution.

"Duck River seems to be the best option for the region. It has the resources the area needs for the next 50 years."

The study engineers concur with an army corps of engineers recommendation to dam up Duck Creek and make a reservoir similar to Lake Catoma. It would be 6 miles from Cullman and the least expensive option, at $63.7 million.

Another advantage is local ownership so they can sell excess water to other utilities. 

It will also provide additional recreational opportunities. Provided local leaders go for this option, engineers say it may take 2 years to become a reality.

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