take-action-shutterstock_168123584-scaled.jpgIt is the beginning of the new legislative session on Beacon Hill and time to help us pass the proposed Drought Bill filed by Senator Eldridge & Representative Meschino as SD.142/HD.1557

Currently the state has no authority to require water conservation during a drought, leading to a patchwork approach with some towns very proactive and others not so much; take a look at this map from July during last summer’s drought to see what we mean! Please email your legislators, asking them to co-sponsor the Drought Bill that would allow the state to require nonessential water restrictions during a drought. Want to know more about this bill? Here’s the latest bill fact sheet.

This Bill will be the focus of Lobby for Rivers on March 15th.

Example email:

“Dear Representative/Senator ______, My name is ___________ and I am a resident of ___________. I am writing to request that you cosponsor H.1557/S.142, An Act relative to maintaining adequate water supplies through effective drought management (sponsored by Representative Joan Meschino and Senator Jamie Eldridge). This bill would make our waterways and water supply more resilient to drought. Climate change is bringing more frequent and severe droughts to Massachusetts, and our current management is falling short. The drought bill would give the EEA Secretary the authority to require regional water conservation during drought, making our waters more resilient, and codify the existing Drought Management Task Force into statute. Scaling up our response to drought will give our waterways – and the people and wildlife that depend on them – the best chance at a healthy future. Examples of local streams that suffer from low flows and overwithdrawals include the Third Herring Brook, First Herring Brook, Herring Brook, Weir, Jones, and South Rivers.

Recent Win for Water Conservation: “Registered” Water Withdrawals Required to Conserve During Droughts