header photo

Save Greers Ferry Lake

Greers Ferry Lake Needs Your Help!

Update on Cove Creek Water Intake

June 26, 2012   ( see USACE Permit approval below,  August 9, 2012 )

Approximately nine years ago a Cove Creek water intake permit and water allotment was granted to (now) Lonoke White Public Water Authority (LWPWA).  It would serve some 11 communities to the south.  The permit was for a vertical shaft drilled down from a processing site, then horizontally into the lake for a single elevation water intake. Later requirements by the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) called for multilevel intakes to selectively withdraw “best quality” water at a level 10-15 feet below prevailing variable surface elevations.  Water quality vs. depth varies greatly according to many factors, especially location. No testing or verification of water quality was done at Cove Creek.

LWPWA engineers proposed five levels of intakes to satisfy the ADH request.  The lowest intake would be near the bottom of the conservation level and the highest intake would be at 458’ mean sea level (msl). Initially, four 42 inch diameter lines would be installed to supply 10 million gallons per day (mgd) to the new water users, and expandable to 30 mgd.  The supply lines were to be above ground from a processing station atop the hill down to the lake.  This would be a major change from the original permit and would require re-authorization by the Corps of Engineers.  The Project will be about one mile east of the Cove Creek campground and boat launch sites.  Please see SGFL aerial photos of these Intakes.

Save Greers Ferry Lake, Inc Directors discussed this proposal with LWPWA, ADH, and Corps representatives.  SGFL main concerns were safety, aesthetics, recreation and property values.  SGFL’s basic requests were for buried, rather than exposed, supply lines and an elevation limit of 450’ msl for water intake structures.  The intakes are about the size of a 16’ fishing boat.  Each of the four supply lines would have intakes at three elevations instead of five.  The Greers Ferry Lake Project Office was mostly in agreement with our requests.

The Little Rock Office of the Corps of Engineers has now issued a Draft Permit to LWPWA for the Cove Creek water intake project.  This permit must be accepted by LWPWA and approved by the Corps before it becomes effective. Modifications could be incorporated in the final permit. 

For details, please click here to open the PDF supplied by the USACE (Little Rock) --->   Draft Permit 1994-12124-4 details.

According to the Draft Permit, the supply lines from the processing site to the lake will be buried and certain landscape restoration requirements urged by SGFL and the Greers Ferry Lake Project Office must be met. The maximum elevation of water intake screens will be allowed up to 453’ msl.  This is a significant improvement over the original 458’ msl proposal which would have made the intakes unusable and exposed above the surface at the current lake level, and likely for the remainder of the summer.

August 9, 2012 -

USACE Approves LWPWA Modified Permit for Water Intake Structure on Greers Ferry Lake.

In Conclusion:

SGFL, Inc Directors spent considerable time and effort to promote safety, aesthetic, recreation and property value protection for the Cove Creek area and to encourage safeguards for future developments.  Efforts included numerous meetings and discussions with controlling authorities, promoting public awareness via public notices and public comment periods, and furnishing data and rationale to the Corps of Engineers, LWPWA, and the media. Your support is greatly appreciated.