The mission of the EPA is to protect human health and the environment—air, water, and land—upon which all life depends. EPA has been actively involved with the Lake Champlain Basin Program since its inception in 1990. In addition to serving as the primary funding agency, EPA has worked to provide grant funds and technical expertise through a wide range of programs to help advance environmental education and preserve and enhance the Basin’s ecological function.
The EPA has developed Geographic Response Plans (GRPs) on Lake Champlain to protect natural, historic, cultural, economic, and other resources after spills of oil or hazardous materials. The EPA established a workgroup consisting of representatives from Federal, State, Tribal, and Local governmental agencies along with environmental response contractors, the oil/chemical industry, and local environmental advocacy groups to identify and prioritize sites, and recommended protection strategies based on the vulnerability of the resources and the risk of spills. Lake Champlain will be better protected and emergency responders will be better prepared to respond to environmental hazards impacting this important resource.
A Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) is a “pollution budget” that sets the maximum amount of a pollutant that can enter a waterbody and still meet water quality standards. EPA Region 1 works closely with Vermont to track progress on the TMDLs for phosphorus for the 12 Vermont segments of Lake Champlain. This collaboration established limits and reduction goals for each sub-watershed and land use sector, including a detailed framework needed to achieve reduction goals. EPA Region 2 continues to work with New York State DEC on its implementation plan for the TMDL for the New York portion of the Lake.