Shepaug River Expert Testimony

Shepaug River Study

The Situation

Stakeholders along western Connecticut’s Shepaug River brought suit against the City of Waterbury for diverting more water than needed to its water supply reservoirs, which drain to the Naugatuck River Basin – leaving the Shepaug with minimal flow while the city reservoirs were spilling. The stakeholders hired GKY to serve as an expert witness to help prove that the city could allow more water to flow down the Shepaug River while safely meeting municipal water demands.

The Solution

GKY developed a river basin model that simulates complex operating rules for diversions and water supply withdrawals. We used the model to develop operating rules that allowed higher water flow down the Shepaug River while fulfilling the city’s water requirements.

Equipped with this analysis, we negotiated with the State Department of Environmental Protection and the State Attorney General’s Office. In addition, we served as an expert witness during trial.

The Result

We were successful in convincing the State to side with our client. The court found that Waterbury was diverting more water than needed; consequently their diversion operations have been changed to release more water to the Shepaug River.