New Hampshire

Program Year: One

Client: New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services, New Hampshire Office of Energy and Planning

State-identified Need: Identify opportunities to integrate land use and source water protection goals within and beyond the state's existing program and regulatory framework.

Project Summary: Work iteratively with state agency staff and outside stakeholders to develop a prioritized list of actions most likely to result in better alignment of land use and source water protection activities.

Methodology: Based on input from a broad-based group of staff from New Hampshire's water- and land-related public and non-profit programs, the Project Team developed a list of opportunities for better protection of source water. The team conducted four workshops in Concord, NH in July, 2008, to discover which opportunities garnered the most support and enthusiasm and to better understand specific actions required to implement them. Workshop participants voted on the resulting list of ten action items, and these votes, along with review and refinement by the state clients, informed the final Action Plan.

Recommendations: Ten recommended action items addressed regulatory incentives, conservation funding, access to important data and communication tools, and planning and development. Within these broad categories, the action strategies are often interdependent; where accomplishing one fosters implementation of another one; or they can be implemented simultaneously to use human and financial resources more efficiently.

Three action items stood above the rest, with broad support as high-impact initiatives. Two of these require low-to-moderate effort or investment to implement, while the third would require a more significant investment and long-term commitment:

  • Revise surface water quality standards and protections, and groundwater classification to better protect drinking water sources as well as other high-quality waters.
  • Expand eligibility for the Water Supply Land Protection Grant Program.
  • Expand and enhance New Hampshire's on-line geographic information resources to support local planning needs.

Work Underway: New Hampshire has arranged for $3 million in water quality mitigation funds from the widening of Interstate 93 to be directed into their Water Supply Land Protection Grant Program. In 2009, they expanded eligibility for this grant program to land conservation organizations, making a wider range of land conservation projects feasible. Learn more >>

New Hampshire used its $2000 implementation grant toward its 2009 Water and Watershed conference and to bring a smart growth speaker (former Maryland Governor Parris N. Glendening) to the event.

Download the Final New Hampshire Report.