Governor Sonny Perdue announced Wednesday a plan he says will conserve water. The legislative proposal comes after a federal court ruling that would prohibit Atlanta from using Lake Lanier as a drinking water source.
Perdue’s proposed water bill requires three things -- efficient water fixtures in new homes and buildings, more efficient cooling towers at new industrial sites, and metering at new multi-unit constructions so individuals can tell how much water they’re using.
It would take effect July 2012--- that's also a federal deadline that cuts Atlanta off from Lake Lanier’s water.
The state is appealing the ruling, but Perdue says regardless of the outcome, Georgia needs to conserve.
"But please hear me out and let me be clear, these are ideas that should move forward. These are the right things to do whether or not the judge’s ruling is sustained or not."
Environmentalists say the measure is a good first step, but one that should have been taken years ago.
Neil Herring with Sierra Club says Perdue's proposal marks a shift in thinking.
"It’s clear Georgia recognizes there’s a limit on its supply and it’s got to behave as if that limit was real and visible than here to fore they were willing to admit. That’s the big change here."