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letters | Mass. Moves to save water sources

Supplier wary of state’s new framework

As a public water supply district in Massachusetts, we appreciate the Globe’s attention to the important issue of sustainable water management (“A move to save water sources,” Page A1, Nov. 29). Our core mission is to provide clean, safe drinking water at an affordable cost to support the public health, safety, and economic needs of our community. Over the past few decades, water suppliers have taken significant steps forward in protecting and preserving water resources to meet these obligations — now and into the future.

We are concerned that the new water allocation framework released by the state will divert already limited available resources away from critical needs for water system reliability, including capital improvements and infrastructure replacement, to a far narrower streamflow restoration agenda being advanced by river advocates.

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After reviewing the science produced during this process, we are not convinced that further control of water usage will result in the environmental benefits suggested. However, it is clear there will be significant compliance costs to our communities and ratepayers.

The permits that govern our water withdrawals already contain a number of aggressive conservation conditions designed to protect the environment. We believe that it is irresponsible, especially in these challenging economic times, for the state to impose even more costs on water customers in order to gain such a small environmental benefit.

Robert J. Delaney

Superintendent

Chelmsford Water District

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