Clean Water
Matters!

The diverse ecosystems, working
landscapes, and vibrant communities
that inspire and sustain us depend on
clean water. Learn about pollution
reduction strategies.

Healthy Habitats
Connect Us All

Lakeshores, stream banks, and wetlands are critical to clean
water and biodiversity. Learn about efforts to improve
habitat connectivity in the Basin ecosystem.

We Care for
What We Know

Recreation fosters stewardship of the Basin’s rich
natural and cultural heritage by connecting people
to the landscape while supporting local economies.
Learn about ways to explore the Basin.

Informed Citizens
Make Wiser Choices

Citizens who have an understanding and
appreciation of water resources make informed
choices about actions that might contribute to
pollution. Learn about education programs.

    Water & Environment

    Did You Know?

    Anglers spent $205 million on goods related to fishing Lake Champlain in a year, according to a 2000 recreation and tourism study.
    Find out more

    Stormwater

    Stormwater: Reducing Polluted Runoff

    storm drain

    Photo: VT DEC

    The Lake Champlain watershed typically receives 35 inches of rain annually, but we rarely think about where the rain goes and its impact on our watershed or the Lake. When rain falls on a field or forest, it can infiltrate (or soak) into the ground, which reduces the amount of runoff flowing across the ground surface. Runoff can pick up sediment, nutrients and other pollutants and carry them to the nearest waterway, and then to the Lake.

    When rain falls on towns and cities, much of it flows off impervious surfaces like roofs, driveways, and sidewalks into the storm drain system, which in turn drains into the nearest waterway. This stormwater and can erode stream banks and increase water pollution. Research has shown us that one acre of developed land typically sends three times as much phosphorus to the lake as one acre of agricultural land. As the population within the Lake Champlain watershed continues to grow, development pressure on the landscape also will increase.

    The need to install stormwater BMPs to compensate for the increasing amount of impervious surface area in the watershed is greater than ever. In order to effectively manage stormwater in developed areas, highly detailed mapping of impervious surfaces for the New York and Vermont portions of the Basin was conducted in 2013 (download shapefiles from VCGI).

    Home Improvement Tips to Reduce Stormwater Runoff

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    Home improvement tips to reduce stormwater runoff

    In the City of South Burlington, Vermont, one in three homes has a downspout that carries rainwater from a gutter to ground level and then into the City’s storm drain system. During a heavy rainfall, a downspout can drain as much as 12 gallons of water per minute. Many communities in the Basin have similar problems. Redirecting even one downspout away from the storm drain system can significantly reduce the impact a home has on the Basin’s waterways. Try this interactive home improvement animation to learn some easy, inexpensive and even beautiful tips to reduce runoff from your property, or visit these links:

    More on Stormwater

    Newly released EPA report on Case Studies Analyzing the Economic Benefits of Low Impact Development and Green Infrastructure Programs

    EPA Resource Page for Low Impact Development and Green Infrastructure

    For the most recent information about stormwater runoff, please visit the “Where does Phosphorus Come From?” page of our State of the Lake website.

    For maps and additional information, please visit the  Lake Champlain Basin Atlas.

    Visit the Helpful Links page for additional stormwater resources.

    What is the State of the Lake?

    What is the
    State of the Lake?

    Learn about the health of Lake Champlain in the 2015 State of the Lake report. Read about trends in key indicators of water quality and ecosystem health. Read the State of the Lake report

    Volunteers

    Make Some Waves

    From using lake-friendly cleaning products to volunteering with a local watershed group, you can help restore and protect the Lake Champlain Basin. Find out how you can get involved

    Track Our Progress

    Track Our Progress

    Explore the goals and actions of our partners and track our progress online with the Opportunities for Action website. View Opportunities for Action

    © 2017 Lake Champlain Basin Program
    Site design: Taylor Design
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    Lake Champlain Basin Program

    Lake Champlain Basin Program
    54 West Shore Road
    Grand Isle, VT 05458
    800-468-5227 (NY & VT)
    or 802-372-3213