The Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation is seeking input on proposed phosphorus cleanup plan for Lake Memphremagog that will be the basis of a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL). This meeting will be held on Tuesday November 15th from 2:00 to 3:30 at the East Side Restaurant 47 Landing St in Newport.
Phosphorus levels in the Vermont portion of Lake Memphremagog are above the water quality standard and contribute to cyanobacteria blooms as well as excessive plant and algae growth that limits the quality of the lake for recreational use. Modeling of phosphorus runoff from the Lake Memphremagog watershed estimates that much of the phosphorus load is coming from agricultural lands (45%) and developed lands (23%), with an additional 20% from stream channel instability and 12% from natural sources. Modeling also estimates that loading from these sources needs to be reduced by 29% for the lake to meet its water quality standards.
At this meeting, proposed phosphorus reduction targets for each of these land use sectors will be presented along with control strategies including regulatory programs, technical and financial resources that are needed to support municipalities, individuals, farmers in meeting these loading reduction targets. More information is available at the following link which includes links to a summary of the proposed TMDL and modeling documentation.
Ahead of the TMDL meeting from 1:30 to 2:00 at the same location, the Memphremagog Watershed Association will present the results of a stormwater master planning study for the Lake Memphremagog Watershed that has identified several projects to reduce stormwater runoff in the watershed in the towns of Barton, Orleans, Derby and the City of Newport. These projects will be priorities for future grants to reduce phosphorus loading to Lake Memphremagog.