Water Resources

NC River Basins

PTRC River Basins

The Piedmont Triad is home to three of North Carolina’s major river basins- the Cape Fear, the Roanoke, and the Yadkin-Pee Dee Rivers. These streams, rivers, lakes, and reservoirs provide clean drinking water for over 1.6 million people and are a valuable and critical resource for the region. They help support local food production and manufacturing, recreation and tourism, as well as native wildlife. However, like many other urbanized areas of North Carolina, there are several miles of streams within the Piedmont Triad that no longer meet state water quality standards.

The leading causes of pollution in our waterways are sediments, bacteria (such as E. coli) and excess nutrients (such as nitrogen and phosphorus), which are primarily contributed by surrounding land uses, stormwater runoff, and other nonpoint sources. These issues span throughout the region and are not limited by jurisdictional boundaries. Almost every activity that occurs within a watershed has an impact on downstream water quality, whether it be new construction, runoff from existing development, agricultural practices, or even household activities, such as gardening and lawn care, septic system use and maintenance, water diversion, and car maintenance. 

The region’s water resources will face increasing pressures as the Piedmont Triad continues to grow and expand, both in terms of water quality and demand. Our water resource program is dedicated to ensuring future generations in the Piedmont Triad have access to clean and safe water by assisting local governments in addressing their water quality and quantity needs.  Over the years, PTRC has been involved in a wide variety of efforts to better protect the region’s water resources, including:

  • Local & Regional Watershed Plan Development
  • Stormwater Ordinance Development
  • Open Space & Conservation Planning
  • Water Access & Recreation Planning
  • Utility Mapping & GIS Services and 
  • Stormwater Outreach & Education

If you have a similar project or are interested in any of our planning services, please contact our water resources staff below. For more information about projects we are currently involved in, please visit our Planning Projects page. 

Contact Us 

Cameron Colvin
Water Resources Planner
Piedmont Triad Regional Council
Phone: 336-904-0300
Email: ccolvin@ptrc.org