Pinchot Institute for Conservation Common Waters Fund
The Pinchot Institute for Conservation worked in the Upper Delaware River Basin, the main source of drinking water for greater Philadelphia (15 million people). The goal was to encourage donations and financial support from water utilities and their customers for watershed protection. Water quality in the Delaware River is generally good; this project sought to maintain that condition through protection and restoration of forestland, a neglected issue in this watershed.
Virginia Department of Forestry - Forests to Faucets Program
The Virginia Department of Forestry sought to increase forest cover in the South Fork Rivanna Reservoir Watershed, the primary water source for Charlottesville, by developing a sustainable funding source from water users. Their reservoir is vulnerable to sedimentation; since 2002 it has lost 36% of its capacity to sediments. Discussions about dredging the reservoir have focused attention on the need to protect and enhance forest cover to prevent continued sedimentation.
Upper Neuse, North Carolina Clean Water Initiative
The Conservation Trust for North Carolina worked with six land trusts to create a “revenue-shed” to help finance future forest conservation in Raleigh’s watershed, the Upper Neuse River/Falls Lake. Concerned about forest-cover loss in the watershed and its impact on reservoir siltation, Raleigh allocated $6 million to protect their forested watershed. In 2011, the City of Raleigh instituted a watershed protection fee that averages about 40 cents/household/month. This generates about $1.8 million annually for projects to protect and restore water quality in the Upper Neuse River watershed.