To sustain the environment and to protect the natural resources of South Florida, Pinellas County is aiming to put together a watershed management plan.
Watersheds are any area of land that drains to an open body of water and in Pinellas County, every bit of water drains somewhere before it ultimately ends up in Tampa Bay or in the Gulf of Mexico.
Water management plans like the one described in the above video take several years to implement and involve the participation of local stakeholders, such as local municipalities. These water management plans consider the watershed as a whole and evaluate all its characteristics.
A watershed management plan typically consists of four parts: watershed evaluation, floodplain analysis, surface water resource assessments, and improvement alternatives.
The watershed evaluation involves gathering data and building a model of its key features and infrastructure. The floodplain analysis involves looking at different drainage scenarios. The surface water assessment looks at the quality of drinking water and surface water while monitoring for pollutants. The improvement alternative look at ways to decrease the possibility of flooding and also to improve the health of the watershed.