The TN Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC), City of Franklin, and HRWA announced the issuance of a new state permit with tighter conditions on Franklin's withdrawal of water from the Harpeth. This permit incorporates some key changes HRWA had recommended based on our analyses that will improve protection of the Harpeth and enable better science-based decisions. These include:
- A new condition that prohibits withdrawals when dissolved oxygen levels in the river are below state standards
- Establishing a monthly reporting system for compliance review
- Installing an accurate measuring system for the river's flow upstream of Franklin's pumps that we hope will be installed as close to August 1 as possible prior to summer low flows. According to our review of 6 years of city documents provided by Franklin to HRWA, the city was not basing its operations on a measure of the rivers' flow at the intake. Instead the city was using river flow readings that are downstream from their withdrawal which TDEC had specifically stated needed to be resolved when the permit was first issued nearly 8 years ago. (see formal complaint).
(see joint press release).