Water Quality Problems
Lake and river water quality pollution problems and their solutions begin on the land, and this is where we focus our efforts. Runoff carries pollutants into the nearest waterway – and these pollutants continue to flow downstream. Such pollutants include sediments, nutrients, bacteria, pesticides, toxic metals, and exotic invasive species.
These inputs are harming our lakes. The symptoms we see today include algae blooms, invasive weeds, muddy water, bacteria, nuisance swans and geese, and the decline of fisheries.
In addition, a new threat, which we are watching closely, is the spread of toxic bluegreen algae. This toxin is a potential health risk to pets, livestock, and humans. Some Indiana lakes have even been closed for swimming due to these algal toxins.
Water Quality Solutions
The Tippecanoe Watershed Foundation works with partners to implement studies and pollution reduction projects. A few examples include restoring stream banks and wetlands, creating sediment traps, installing filter strips, fencing livestock out of streams, improving storm drains, and creating rain gardens and natural shorelines.
In addition, people like you are taking action to improve water quality. They are making clear choices about phosphorus-free fertilizers, septic maintenance, and invasive species control – just to name a few methods. Our efforts to reduce and stop water pollution at its source are having an impact, but more work remains.