building a pond in pa

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by MELOC, Nov 20, 2005.

  1. MELOC

    MELOC Master Of My Domain

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    i live in pennsylvania and would like to build a pond for multiple uses. we have property where i could locate a pond at an elevation of 15-25 feet above my house level. there is a spring/muddy spot there most of the year unless it gets really dry. it is located at the bottom of another rise so i could collect runoff as well. if i farmed fish in it, i have other springs nearby that i could use to fill the pond if need be.

    my uses would most likely be agricultural irrigation. if the water source would prove to be constant, i would consider generating electricity via hydropower (on a very small scale, i have a stream by the other side of the house that i have considered using for hydropower, i could combine the systems). farming fish or crayfish is another possibility.

    what regulations are involved? state and or local i would suppose. where do i inquire get info?
     
  2. JAK

    JAK Well-Known Member

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    With a windmill you could pump water up from the stream, then generate power when you need it. If your fishies can handle a 5 foot rise and fall and the surface of the pond is 1/10 acre and you have an average 20 foot drop back down to the stream you could store 10 kwh of energy, or 1 kwh for every 6" drop in the pond level. Of course you would have some inefficiencies in both directions, but you would save on batteries.
     

  3. bulldinkie

    bulldinkie Well-Known Member

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    We have a windmill on a well we drilled about 2 years ago,also we have rain spouts running into pond.I have phone no etc of some guys in Lancaster that put in windmills did great job for us they have new & used.Different sizes I think ours ios 50' Im in Pa too where abouts are you? :)
     
  4. pumpkinlady

    pumpkinlady Well-Known Member

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    MELOC:Check with your township for any ordinaces they might have concerning building a pond. They might suggest you connact the DEP. Now when we wanted to build a pond some years back they told us it could take awhile to get the permits required. Since we didn't want to wait and shuffle paperwork we just went ahead and had the local stripmine come in make it for us. Of course we had trees hiding it from public view and just tell people it has been there.

    Chas: Shhhhhhhh; you know how it is around our township!
     
  5. MELOC

    MELOC Master Of My Domain

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    unfortunately i think our township has joined with the local hospital's proctology department. it would be unthinkable to break ground without a permit around here.

    i live on 30 acres my family has had for 35 years. it used to be rural but the city is now only a mile away with $500,000 homes etc. and yet we cannot get hooked to the water and sewer grid and it is only 1/3 mile away. (our system is antiquated and needs improvement...i would just prefer the sewer. i know if i build a sandmound, a year later they will bring in the sewer and i will be miffed.)

    this land is currently zoned residential 2 which i think allows for trailers. it used to be agricultural. i would like to start a small scale farm for fruits and berries and maybe the fish pond etc. i will need to plea for a zoning variance or to have the area rezoned. having $500,000 homes so close and 30 acres, i fear the township will wish to control it's taxbase and deny any requests for other than residential use. they will get far more in taxes if they can encourage us to sell and develope the land...FAT CHANCE AND OVER MY DEAD BODY!!!

    i worked in a factory for ten years and many other worthless places for 10 years before that. i feel i am done working for "the man" and now wish to make it on what the land can bear for me. unfortunately developers and local governments have no sympathy for values and ways of life, only for taxe bases and profit margins. i feel i may have missed the boat by working so hard for "the man" and not for myself. the city has moved in and i will have an uphill fight to regain my way of life. who would have thought i would live in an area that would require one to locate a new barn 100 feet from a property line. (just an example). there used to be a cattle farm right across the road from my house, lol.
     
  6. stanb999

    stanb999 Well-Known Member

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    In PA the dep almost encourages you to build a pond. The permitting process isn't all that hard. The things to consider is the size of the pond, the acres of potential drainage. If it is land locked or open to a stream or brook. If the pond is less than 1 acre that drains less than 100 acres and the dam hight is less than 4 ft and it doesn't overflow into a pa waterway the permitting process is really easy. If it's not like this the permiting gets more complicated as you go.
    look here http://sites.state.pa.us/PA_Exec/Fish_Boat/faqpond.htm

    Then look to a site called pondboss.com it gives lots of info.

    P.S. I have a pond with a leaky dam :(. Make sure when you construct it you put a good keyway.
     
  7. MELOC

    MELOC Master Of My Domain

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    thanks stan...much appreciated!!!