State Draft Plan Addresses Phosphorus Pollution in Lake Champlain

John Herrik, reporting for VTDIGGER.ORG:

The state is undertaking a complex Lake Champlain cleanup that will likely alter the state’s farmland, forests and streams over the next decade.

The Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation and the Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets released a draft plan for restoring the Lake Champlain Basin this month. The consortium must comply with the Environmental Protection Agency’s request to clean up the lake or face funding holds and strict regulations, according to David Mears, commissioner of the Department of Environmental Conservation....
The plan, which will be vetted during several public meetings this winter, includes tightening the state’s agriculture programs, storm water management practices, ensuring river channel stability, updating forest management practices and watershed protection plans. These are considered “nonpoint sources,” unlike the closely regulated facility discharges around the lake, that dump phosphorous [sic] into the lake.

Start with a good plan, and find effective levers to change the numerous systems that have been allowed pollution to flow into the lake for so long.