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Identification of Critical Source Areas of Phosphorus Within the Vermont Sector of the Missisquoi Bay Basin

Dec 15, 2011

Prepared by Members of the Stone team with partner Milone & MacBroom, this detailed technical report for the Lake Champlain Basin Program (LCBP) was developed to identify, locate, and rank the most important critical source areas of phosphorus loads in the Vermont sector of the Missisquoi Bay Basin.

From the report: "Public concern over water quality in Missisquoi Bay remains high. Missisquoi Bay shows some of the most profound effects of P pollution, with recurrent blue-green algae blooms that are both unsightly and potentially toxic. Since 2002, Vermont has invested approximately $10 million annually, in combined state and federal resources, in programs designed to improve water quality in Lake Champlain. These efforts are subject to intense scrutiny, in part because to date they have failed to yield the desired improvements in Lake Champlain water quality. Further, in this era of shrinking government resources it is unlikely that increased annual funding will be provided to this effort. Tools are needed that can help program managers identify priorities for implementation and better target their efforts to those areas of the landscape that disproportionately contribute P pollution, often termed critical sources areas (CSAs). The overall purpose of this project was to identify CSAs in order to improve the cost-effectiveness and efficiency of land treatment efforts to reduce P loads. This report presents the results of intensive watershed modeling of the MBB to identify critical source areas of phosphorus pollution at both a strategic and a tactical scale."