Reporting Water Use to Change Soon
The State Journal
11 December 2014
By Mandi Cardosi, Government Reporter
The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection is
continuing to work on getting word out about two new requirements
related to large water withdrawals from surface or groundwater
The state Water Resources Protection and Management Act was
amended this year to include a lower reporting threshold, which
will require additional water users to report withdrawals along
with collection of monthly data.
The revision also is a result of the passage of Senate Bill 373,
the “water and aboveground storage tank” bill.
Starting Jan. 1, 2015, the reporting threshold will be 300,000
gallons withdrawn from surface or groundwater sources in a 30-day
period. The previous reporting threshold was 750,000 gallons per
month. The new threshold brings West Virginia in line with the
water withdrawal reporting requirements of most surrounding
Also effective in January, anyone withdrawing at the
300,000-gallon threshold or higher must begin collecting water use
data for each month so the data can be included in a survey
submitted to the DEP's Water Use Section of the Division of Water
and Waste Management on an annual basis. The annual surveys must
include the actual monthly water use. In previous years, Large
Quantity Users (LQUs) could certify their water use was within
plus-or-minus 10 percent of the quantity reported the prior year.
The DEP will send letters to all existing LQUs and entities
identified as potential new LQUs to notify them of the changes.
Included with the letters will be directions to locate and
download the revised water use survey forms for the 2015 reporting
The LQU classification going forward includes not only any water
users who withdraw 300,000 gallons or more in a 30-day period, but
also continues to include any entity that bottles water for
resale, regardless of the quantity withdrawn. Excluded from the
classification is water designated for farm use, including
watering livestock or poultry on a farm, though farms are
encouraged to voluntarily report water withdrawals to assist with
the accuracy of the survey. Entities that purchase water from a
water provider also are not considered LQUs.
Because the agency cannot identify and contact every potential new
LQU, the responsibility to report at the new 300,000-gallon
threshold is ultimately with each water withdrawing entity. Any
Large Quantity Users that have not registered must complete a
The 2015 monthly data must be reported by March 31, 2016. The 2016
monthly data and each subsequent year's monthly data must be
included in an annual survey submitted to the agency by March 31
of each following year. The forms and instructions for filling
them out may be found at dep.wv.gov.