Nutrient Loading and Impacts in Lakes Champlain and Memphremagog
In October 2017, the International Joint Commission (IJC) received a request from the governments of Canada and the United States concerning high levels of phosphorus and harmful algal blooms (HABs) in Lake Champlain and Lake Memphremagog.
Though both lakes eventually empty into the St. Lawrence River, they are in separate watersheds. Because of this and other distinctions between the two systems, the IJC will conduct the review as two projects.
Project 1 - Missisquoi Bay, Lake Champlain and Richelieu River
Lake Champlain, Missisquoi Bay and Richelieu River continue to suffer from excessive loads of nutrients and harmful algal blooms (HABs). Lake Champlain, shared between New York and Vermont, flows northwards into the Richelieu River eventually into the St. Lawrence River. Although significant work has been done in Canada and the United States on water quality across the system, ecological conditions have not improved.
Project 2 - Lake Memphremagog
Significant resources and efforts have been dedicated to the reduction of nutrient loading to Lake Memphremagog and the prevention of harmful algal blooms (HABs); however, ecological conditions have not improved. As a consequence, the public has high expectations that existing and planned efforts will improve water quality.
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