EPA announces new phosphorus TMDLs for Vermont segments of Lake Champlain
The TMDLs measure how much of a particular pollutant a body of water can absorb without falling below predetermined water quality standards. Working with the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation and the Vermont Agency of Agriculture and Food Markets, the EPA has determined the phosphorus TMDLs for the state’s 12 segments of Lake Champlain.
While the levels of phosphorus entering the lake have declined, the concentrations of this contaminant have not, and have, according to long-term trends, actually increased in some segments since 1990. Phosphorus is found in soils, pet and animal waste and fertilizers, amongst other pollutants, and enters Lake Champlain via contaminated runoff from roads, farmland and lawns.
The EPA and state agencies will be hosting public outreach meetings on the new TMDLs and the state’s implementation plan Aug. 26 at St. Albans and Aug. 27 at Burlington and Rutland. The public comment period is open until Sept. 15.