This September, the Ground Water Protection Council (GWPC), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water, and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) will host the 2011 GWPC Annual Forum, titled "Meeting Competing Demands with Finite Groundwater Resources." The event will include three primary subject areas – ground water availability and sustainability; ground water / energy sustainability; and ground water quality.

The GWPC is the national association of state ground water regulators. For the last 28 years, GWPC has hosted the Annual Forum, which brings together state, federal and local agency representatives with the responsibility for ground water/drinking water protection, as well as industry, researchers and environmental groups in a congenial venue to discuss the latest technology and policy developments. The event should provide the opportunity for these groups to foster communication on safeguarding the nation's ground water supplies.

In addition to the many concurrent technical sessions, the event will feature two general sessions, including Day-One: Groundwater Sustainability, industry stakeholders as its presenters, and the Day-Two general session, Water / Agriculture Nexus: Groundwater Quality and Quantity Issues Related to Agriculture, with presentations from USDA, EPA, USGS and others.

At the 2011 event, participants will explore the complex relationships between ground water quality and sustainability in the midst of increasing competing demands, such as agriculture, domestic use, energy development and power generation. Outcomes include informing policy decisions at state, federal and local levels, and fostering interaction among key stakeholders.

With the goal of informing policy makers at both the state and national level, the event will feature more than 75 of the nation's top experts from the public and private sectors. Hot topics including energy impacts on ground water use and ground water impacts on energy development; alternative water resources; water use and nuclear energy; ground water management planning; ground water and agriculture; nutrients and ground water; carbon capture and storage and ground water; and several others will be covered.

In conjunction with the event, GWPC will conduct the Natural Gas Development Seminar: Groundwater Protection and Hydraulic Fracturing, featuring hydraulic fracturing studies; regulatory considerations for hydraulic fracturing and ground water protection; technical considerations for hydraulic fracturing and ground water; and factors related to hydraulic fracturing implementation: safeguarding water resources. Additionally, the EPA will hold a public workshop entitled Class VI Geologic Sequestration Financial Responsibility Guidance.

The event is co-sponsored by the GWPC, DOE and EPA, in collaboration with the National Ground Water Association, Association of State Drinking Water Administrators, National Rural Water Association, Water Research Foundation, Nuclear Energy Institute, Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission, National Association of Clean Water Agencies, Clean Water America Alliance, State Review of Oil & Natural Gas Environmental Regulations, Environmentally Friendly Drilling, New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Council, Ground Water Research and Education Foundation and others.  

For more information about the event, visit www.gwpc.org.