Water Quality

The Lake Champlain-Lake George Regional Planning Board works with communities and organizations to develop plans and programs to ensure the long-term health of the region’s waterbodies. Because actions upland from a waterbody have a direct impact on the waterbody itself, many water quality plans take a broader approach and are based around the entire watershed. A watershed is a land area from which all surface and ground water is channeled toward the same river, stream or lake. The boundaries of a watershed area determined by the topography of the land – the hills, mountains, and ridges that are all around us and are often much larger than one would think.

The LCLGRPB’s service area contains portions of the watersheds of Lake Champlain, the Upper Hudson River, the Mohawk River, the Black River and the Saint Lawrence River and covers Warren, Washington, Essex, Clinton, Franklin, and Hamilton Counties.

Champlain Watershed Improvement Coalition of New York (CWICNY)

Much of the LCLGRPB’s service area lies within the Lake Champlain watershed which is 8,234 square miles and spans the States of New York and Vermont, and the Province of Quebec in Canada. The New York State portion of the watershed is just over 3,000 square miles within Warren, Washington, Essex, Clinton, and Franklin counties.

With representatives from five county Soil and Water Conservation Districts, and five county Water Quality Coordinating Committees, and the LCLGRPB, CWICNY goes beyond political boundaries and incorporates public sector/private citizen partnership to complete projects that benefit the watershed. The primary objective of CWICNY is to reduce phosphorus loading to Lake Champlain through the implementation of projects and practices throughout the New York side of the Lake Champlain watershed. These reductions will have a long-term positive impact on the water quality and ecology of the lake and its many tributaries.

Upper Hudson River Watershed Coalition (UHRWC)

The Upper Hudson River Watershed is approximately 4,620 square miles within New York State and spans a large portion of LCLGRPB’s service area - most of Washington and Warren County, as well is as much of Essex and Hamilton Counties.

As a member of the seven-county Upper Hudson River watershed, the LCLGRPB has been working with the UHRQC to complete the Upper Hudson River Watershed Revitalization Plan. This plan outlines issues within the watershed and identifies actions and programs to be implemented. The plan focuses on natural resource improvements for stormwater, agricultural invasive species, erosion, water supply and wastewater, and aquatic passage and is funded by a New York State Department of State Local Waterfront Revitalization Program grant.

Saint Lawrence River

The Saint Lawrence River is the gateway between the North Atlantic and the Great Lakes. The river drains an area of nearly 300,000 miles at its most downstream point. The LCLGRPB service area covers a portion of this drainage area lies in norther Hamilton County, and small parts of western Essex and Clinton Counties.

Services Offered

The LCLGRPB will assist municipalities and other eligible applicants in applying for and administering grants related to water quality and watershed management planning, and outreach and education.

Water Quality Improvement Program (WQIP)

Administered by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC), WQIP projects aim to improve water quality, reduce the potential for harmful algal blooms (HABs), and protect drinking water across the state.

Local Waterfront Revitalization Program (LWRP)

Administered by the New York State Department of State (NYSDOS), LWRP plans aim to identify and address a community’s future path for development of its water and upland resources in order to preserve the natural and cultural characteristics of the community’s waterfront and water-based resources while supporting a wide range of appropriate uses.

Lake Champlain Basin Program (LCPB)

The LCPB works in partnership with government agencies from New York, Vermont, and Quebec, private organizations, local communities and individuals to coordinate and fund efforts that benefit the Lake Champlain Basin’s water quality, fisheries, wetlands, wildlife, recreation, and cultural resources. The LCBP provides grants to protect and enhance the environmental integrity and the social and economic benefits of the Lake Champlain Basin.

Homeowners Guide to a Healthy Lake

The LCLGRPB assists local lake associations with educating residents on best management practices for shorelines, septic systems, invasive species detection, prevention and management and water conservation through this homeowner’s guide.

Recent Reports and Published Plans

Lake Champlain Non-Point Source Pollution Subwatershed Assessment and Management Plan (March 2018)

Cossayuna Lake Watershed Management Review 2000-2016 and Action Plan Update (April 2018)

Lake George Winter Road Maintenance Best Practices Initiative for Water Quality Protection (March 2014)

Lake George Watershed Data Atlas (October 2016)

Lake Champlain Watershed Water Quality Management Planning Roadside Erosion Assessment and Inventory

Upper Hudson River Watershed Roadside Erosion Assessment