For the last several years, the Lake Lanier Association and several advocates, have drafted plans of action to address issues regarding the lake’s delicate balance, of its water quality and the constantly fluctuating levels, not to mention all the downstream demands made on this pristine North Georgia jewel.
I believe they have done an excellent job in their endeavors. However, there is one issue that I would strongly disagree with and that is raising the full pool level by 2 feet to increase capacity.
Now that we have had sufficient rains to recharge the reservoir, it becomes apparent to even the casual observer that this is not a good idea. The lake is presently at 1,073 feet-plus above sea level and now you get a real time snapshot of the problems this would create. Think of what it would look like adding another 2 feet with heavy spring rains in years to come.
I now see trees in the water, picnic tables and sidewalks under water and some bridges with little or no clearance to navigate a vessel underneath. The erosion that this level would cause would only silt up the lake. The trees that will die and eventually fall in the water would be a disaster.
There is plenty of water in the lake and, if properly managed, there is enough to last well into the future. Most of the water that is released winds up in the Gulf Of Mexico. Until some of the laws are changed — i.e. the Endangered Species Act — and eliminate some of the ridiculous elements like the bank-climbing mussel, it will be déjà vu all over again when we have another drought.
So Lake Lanier Association, please take the 1,073 issue off the table, concentrate on clean water and the possibility of dredging and call or write your representatives to make the necessary changes in the law to ensure the future of our lake.