If you are new to Vermont or a longtime resident, we hope you are enjoying your home and the beauty of Vermont and the Lake Champlain basin.
As you have explored the area around your home, you have probably noticed local water bodies. Some of the features that make Vermont special are its lakes, streams, ponds, and wetlands. Maybe you enjoy boating, swimming, fishing, walking along the shores of your favorite lake, or watching a sunset across the water? Maybe you work in a job that is closely linked with water such as the tourism industry or water sports? Maybe your drinking water originates in Lake Champlain. Regardless of what Vermont waters mean to you, you can play an important role in protecting them.
Stormwater, in the form of rain or melted snow or ice, flows as runoff into waterways from our properties, developed lands, agricultural fields, roads, and forests. This runoff transports sediment and other pollutants including nutrients that can negatively impact water quality, public health, and the economy.
On the Lake Champlain Sea Grant website, learn about stormwater management and ways you can protect and improve water quality near your home by minimizing stormwater runoff. Our website provides educational information about the following topics, including resources such as local and state organizations, that can help you manage your home and property in environmentally-friendly ways.
- Lawn care best practices to protect the environment
- Using nature’s strategies to clean and minimize stormwater runoff: rain barrels, rain gardens, and other approaches
- Ways to garden sustainably and create welcoming habitat for wildlife
- Septic system maintenance
- Managing your property in the Current Use Program (a tax reduction program for forests or farmland)
- Low-salt ways to keep surfaces free from ice and snow in winter
- Boating practices that protect water quality
- How to protect yourselves and your pets from risks associated with cyanobacteria blooms (AKA Harmful Algal Blooms)
- 10 short videos about Lake Champlain and how to protect this beautiful resource
Contact linda.patterson [at] uvm.edu (Linda Patterson), Land Use Planning & Water Quality Educator, with any questions or requests for additional information. Together we can keep our waters clean!