MDC wants to temporarily shut down Goodwin Dam amid drought - WFSB 3 Connecticut

MDC wants to temporarily shut down Goodwin Dam amid drought

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BLOOMFIELD, CT (WFSB) -

The current drought may cause a temporary shutdown of the Goodwin Dam in Hartland.

The Metropolitan District, which operates the dam, said if they continue to release water, this will deplete the West Branch Reservoir.

The MDC said it wants to suspend releases from the dam, however it does have an agreement with the state, and changing it could require legislation.

"We have agreed to stop. The dam will be closed indefinitely until there's sufficient rainfall and levels rise,” MDC’s CEO said.

The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection is aware of the problem, but would rather the MDC draw from other water sources, instead of shutting off the dam, which could negatively affect wildlife and eco-systems.

"The drought goes back to last year,” said Peter Aarrestad, of DEEP Inland Fisheries.

All of this has raised even more concerns about a controversial bottling plant which will soon draw millions of gallons of water from reservoirs during one of the worst droughts.

Donna Landerman and Paula Jones have been trying to stop a deal, which allows Niagara Bottling to draw up to nearly two million gallons of water a day from MDC reservoirs.

The plant in Bloomfield is expected to open in a few weeks.

"They are not doing anything to stop the process of water being taken out by the water bottling company,” Donna Landerman said.

The MDC said their system has an abundance of water – two drinking water reservoirs with 42 billion gallons, however those opposed to the plant said there is no contract and no real plan in place to stop Niagara from taking water, no matter how bad the drought gets.

"They should be up and running with two lines --they do need a larger pipe to expand to four lines --- and hopefully some common sense will prevail and hopefully we won't get to that point where they are taking all 1.8 million gallons daily,” said Paul Jones, of Save Our Water.

MDC’s plan is to suspend water starting in mid to late November.

On Monday, at the Windsor Public Library, Save Our Water will be having an informational meeting from 6:30 to 8 p.m. to hear concerns.

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