Transboundary water issues theme of fourth annual Water Resource Conference

October 11, 2017

PHENIX CITY — Water resource planning experts in Georgia, Florida and Alabama will gather in Phenix City Oct. 23-25 for the fourth annual Troy University Water Resource Management and Economics Conference.

The conference is co-sponsored by TROY’s Center for Water Resource Economics, the Tri Rivers Waterway Development Association and the Georgia Association of Water Professionals (GAWP). The conference will begin at 1:30 p.m. (Eastern) on Oct. 23, and all meetings will take place at the Courtyard by Marriott on Whitewater Avenue in Phenix City.

“We are grateful to GAWP Executive Director Pam Burnett and her board for their willingness to join with TROY and the Tri Rivers Waterway Development Association in hosting a conference that brings together the interests of all three states,” said Billy Turner, director of TROY’s Center for Water Resource Economics. “This joint sponsorship provided for the collaboration of the University of Georgia River Center and the University of Alabama Water Policy and Law Center in arranging for a full day of discussions about successful interstate developments from other river systems around the eastern United States.”

Burnett hopes her organization’s involvement in the conference will lead to future collaborations.

“We have a refreshing opportunity to open the door for future collaboration and leadership among water professionals in Georgia, Alabama and Florida,” Burnett said. “We hope this will become an annual tradition of conversation among water colleagues in our states.”

The conference will open with a status report and update on recent developments and legal issues concerning the region’s waters by Bennett Bearden, director of the University of Alabama Water Policy and Law Center. George Taylor of Oglethorpe Power will follow, addressing the changes in hydropower operations. Representatives from Alabama, Georgia and Florida will address the status of water resource planning in each state. Representatives from the Army Corps of Engineers will also provide an update of conditions on the Alabama-Chattahoochee-Flint River System.

The opening day will conclude with a reception on the 14th Street Bridge, over the Chattahoochee River.

Blake Boardman of the Governor’s Savannah River Commission, Jeff Lineberger of Duke Energy and Dean Edson, executive director of the Nebraska Association of Resource Districts, Cherie Schultz of the Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin and Andrew Dehoff, executive director of the Susquehanna River Basin Commission will highlight the conference’s second day.

Ryan Muller, executive director of the Interstate Council on Water Policy, will serve as the luncheon speaker on day two of the conference, addressing Transboundary Water Management in the U.S. Following the luncheon, the Don Hines Award will be presented to Brad Currey, a former chief executive officer of Rock-Tenn Corporation, now known as West Rock, and a leader in water issues in the region.

An evening reception and banquet will feature Brig. Gen. Diana M. Holland, the new commander of the South Atlantic Division of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The final day of the conference will focus on a study addressing functional and structural changes needed to improve the ability of the Alabama-Chattahoochee-Flint River System to meet its mission and goals.

Registration for the entire conference is $200. Partial registration fees are also available. For additional information, visit,