Nutrients are a critical part of all lake ecosystems. Aquatic plants and algae require nitrogen, phosphorus, and a suite of micronutrients, but when there is too much of a particular nutrient, certain plants or algae can dominate a system. Phosphorus is one of the primary water quality challenges in Lake Champlain. Excess phosphorus combined with warm temperatures and calm conditions can sometimes result in toxic cyanobacteria blooms.
Phosphorus is a nutrient that is natural and vital to life, but too much of it in our lakes can lead to excess plant growth and cyanobacteria blooms. Learn more about phosphorus →
Most of the phosphorus in Lake Champlain comes from runoff from developed areas, lawns, farms, and even forests. Learn more about phosphorus sources →
Efforts to reduce phosphorus are targeted for 13 distinct segments of Lake Champlain. Learn more about phosphorus reduction strategies →
The TMDL is a pollution budget that set limits for the amount of phosphorus that can go into the lake and identifies the reductions needed. Learn more about fishing advisories →
The Missisquoi Bay Agreement assigns roles and responsibilities for Vermont and Quebec in reducing phosphorus in Missisquoi Bay. Learn more about the Agreement →
Too much phosphorus combined with warm water temperatures and calm weather conditions can lead to the formation of cyanobacteria blooms. Learn more about cyanobacteria →