For the last half century, Florida has increasingly recognized the need to link its land use planning with the protection of its water resources.
In the early 1970’s, the Florida Environmental Land and Water Management Act of 1972, addressing land use planning, and the Florida Water Resources Act of 1972, addressing the five water management districts and the state environmental agency, now known as the Department of Environmental Protection, laid the foundation for land use planning and water resource management within Florida.
Water Infrastructure addressed by this section includes the identification of active and passive sustainable tools for the following three traditional land use planning areas: water supply development, wastewater management, and stormwater management. These infrastructural areas are interrelated through their common use of water resources, and the public need to appropriately and safely address the associated issues of water quantity, quality, timing and distribution. An integrated approach to all three can cost effectively result in the provision of the best water for a desired use, without adversely impacting the long term sustainability of Florida’s environmentally sensitive water resources.
This portion of the toolbox will occasionally overlap with other topic areas, but does not attempt to be the primary section for addressing the following topics: floodplains, watersheds, wetlands, natural resources, habitats, recreational lands and associated health benefits, environmental restoration, disasters and emergency management, climate change and sea level rise adaptation, and agricultural water use. This section will deal with Florida suitable tools involving LID (Low-Impact Development), conservation and demand reduction, irrigation, reuse, recharge, xeriscaping, decentralized systems, alternative sources and emerging water related sustainable technologies. It will also provide information and planning tools addressing infrastructure related issues that may be more fully addressed within other sections, such as: avoiding the increased infrastructural costs of low density development; designing in water infrastructure resiliency and adaptability; and long-range water supply, wastewater and stormwater planning for future sea-level rise impacts.