The International Joint Commission is inviting public comments on the Missisquoi Bay Critical Source Area Study report.
In August 2008, the Governments of Canada and the United States asked the International Joint Commission (IJC) to help implement a transboundary initiative to reduce phosphorus loading in Lake Champlain’s Missisquoi Bay. In particular, the Governments requested that the IJC:
- Organize a workshop to explore the best means to identify and delineate critical source areas, using modeling and other techniques;
- Compile and acquire data needed, such as digital photographic imagery, in order to identify and delineate critical source areas;
- Oversee a short-term tributary monitoring program in Vermont to provide more detail regarding phosphorus, nitrogen, and sediment loads (with an emphasis on phosphorus) to Missisquoi Bay;
- Compile and analyze information on critical sources of phosphorus in Vermont;
- Combine all new work with existing work in Québec and Vermont to provide a transboundary picture of pollution issues in the entire watershed.
In addressing issues raised by the Governments, the IJC established the International Missisquoi Bay Study Board (the Board) to coordinate investigations with agencies and organizations in both countries to assess the adequacy of the information base and management programs in place to accelerate phosphorus reductions in the Missisquoi Bay watershed.
The report describes the tasks the Study Board has determined should be followed in order to accomplish these phosphorus reduction efforts. The IJC will hold public hearing and review the report before submitting its report to the Governments.
Additional information about the study is available from the website of the International Missisquoi Bay Study Board