Water Supply and Water Quality

Water Supply

The Roanoke Valley – Alleghany Regional Commission participates in the state mandated regional water supply plans required of our member localities. There are three water supply plans which overlap the Roanoke Valley – Alleghany region. All of them were adopted simultaneously, and were reviewed by the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality in 2013. A 5-year update to these plans will be required by December of 2018, and the Regional Commission is working with localities to ensure that this deadline is met.

  • The Upper James Water Supply plan covers Alleghany, Bath, and Highland Counties, as well as Lexington, Buena Vista, Covington, Clifton Forge and Iron Gate.
  • The Roanoke River Water Supply plan covers Roanoke, Bedford, Botetourt, and Franklin Counties as well as the cities of Roanoke and Salem, and the Towns of Boones Mill, Buchanan, Fincastle, Rocky Mount, Troutville and Vinton.
  • The Craig County – Town of New Castle Regional Water Supply Plan covers Craig County and the Town of New Castle.

More information about the state water supply plan requirements and outcomes can be found at the DEQ website.

Water Quality

Apart from the activities described on the Stormwater page of this site, which apply to localities and portions of localities which are under a required MS4 permit, the Regional Commission also works with DEQ to facilitate water quality improvements in rural portions of our service area. This is done through formulating and implementing a Total Maximum Daily Load study or TMDL.


Courtesy Paula Tate Carvins Cove

The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is responsible for developing implementation plans to restore and maintain the water quality in Virginia. These studies determine the total pollutant load a water body can assimilate and still meet Federal and state water quality standards. Following the completion of a TMDL, an implementation plan, commonly called a cleanup plan, is developed for the watershed. In addition to improving water quality, implementation plans can impact land uses such as agriculture, local stormwater regulations, and wastewater discharge permits. The Regional Commission works with DEQ, local governments, private sector stakeholders and citizens to develop and implement TMDLs in area watersheds.

The Roanoke River is currently covered by several TMDLs for E.Coli, PCBs, and Sediment. These pollutants are being monitored by DEQ and localities are working to minimize these impacts according to two approved action plans. You can find out more about TMDL Action Plans here.

Part I of the Roanoke River TMDL Nonpoint Source Action Plan

Part II of the Roanoke River TMDL Nonpoint Source Action Plan

Additional Links:

DEQ Impaired Streams Data
DEQ Water Quality Information & TMDLs
Approved TMDL Studies
Nonpoint Source Implementation Plans

For more information regarding state stormwater management requirements, visit our Stormwater page.