A colony of zebra mussels.
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Phosphorus Loads

Click here to view enlarged map as 612 KB PDF file. New York, Vermont and Quebec have agreed to reduce phosphorus loads to each of Lake Champlain's segments. The Phosphorus Loads Map [612 KB] shows the area draining to each of the lake segments and both the initial (1995) and target phosphorus loads for each.

The target loads are the phosphorus inputs that will eventually result in meeting in-Lake criteria. The in-Lake criteria are the phosphorus concentrations for each segment that are acceptable for the health and human use of the Lake.

In 2002, a Lake Champlain Phosphorus TMDL was jointly prepared by the States of New York and Vermont, and approved by the US Environmental Protection Agency. A TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load) is the maximum amount (load) of a single pollutant from all contributing point and nonpoint sources that a waterbody can receive and still meet water quality standards, and an allocation of that amount to the pollutant's sources.

A TDML is required for Lake Champlain because phosphorus concentrations in many Lake segments are higher than the levels allowed by the Vermont water quality standards. The TMDL is the next step in the refinement of the phosphorus reduction plan for the Lake. It addresses the full range of specific actions that must be taken to achieve the necessary loads reductions. Read more by following the TMDL link below.

Learn More...
  • Lake Champlain Phosphorus TMDL (VT DEC)
  • Background Technical Information for Opportunities for Action: An Evolving Plan for the Future of the Lake Champlain Basin. LCBP. LCBP Technical Report #16. June 1996.
  • Lake Champlain Nonpoint Source Pollution Assessment. LCBP Technical Report #6. February 1994.
Lake Champlain Basin Program, 2004
Design: Nicole L. Ballinger (LCBP) | Maps: Northern Cartographic and LCBP