Nov 20, 2017

Wisconsin DNR Releases 2018 Impaired Waters List

Provisions of the Clean Water Act require states to publish, every two years, a list of all waters that are not meeting water quality standards. A water is considered impaired, not healthy, if it does not support safe human recreation like swimming; if the water does not support healthy aquatic animal and plant communities; or it it does not support safe fish for consumption. The 2018 Impaired Waters List of Wisconsin includes many new waters--the total number of impaired lakes and streams increased significantly. While part of the reason for the increase in unhealthy waters has to do with more sampling and better technology and advances in assessment techniques, there is still a lot to be concerned about. Forests near lakes and streams, riparian woods, protect water quality, fish habitat and other aquatic resources. Riparian woodlands filter sediment and nutrients from runoff; allow water to soak into the ground; stabilize lakeshores and streambanks; shade streams; and provide food and habitat for aquatic organisms. These woods are extremely important and require a special management. Eighty percent of the endangered and threatened species in Wisconsin spend all or part of their lives in areas bordering streams and lakes. Ask us about Riparian Woodlands!