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Wednesday, July 21, 2010 - 2:11pm

Florida Loses Grab For Georgia Reservoir

A federal judge has rejected demands from Florida that more water be released from a reservoir that supplies Atlanta with most of its drinking water to protect species downstream.

U.S. District Court Judge Paul Magnuson on Wednesday rejected Florida's request that more water be released from Lake Lanier in Georgia to help endangered or threatened species in the Apalachicola and other rivers.

Those species are the Gulf sturgeon, fat threeridge mussel and the purple bankclimber mussel.

That decision, however, does not change Magnuson's earlier ruling that Atlanta has little legal right to drinking water from Lake Lanier. He has threatened to severely restrict Atlanta's use of the reservoir by 2012 unless leaders in Georgia, Alabama and Florida can strike a deal.