Citizens' information can help determine impaired lakes and rivers
MADISON Citizens around Wisconsin are invited to submit information they've collected about streams, rivers and lakes to feed into the state's biennial process for determining which waters do not meet water quality standards.
The Department of Natural Resources will use information received by the close of business March 1, 2013, to help assess the condition of Wisconsin’s water bodies and develop the state’s list of impaired waters and biennial water quality report, which the agency must submit to Congress under federal Clean Water Act rules.
"DNR is committed to working together with our nonprofit partners, local governments, community-based water management organizations and citizens across the state to help meet our water quality data needs,” says Aaron Larson, DNR’s Impaired Waters List coordinator.
Every two years, people have the opportunity to submit their data for use in developing assessment reports that can help steer scarce state resources to clean up lakes and rivers. The department considers that information along with internal monitoring data and other assessments.
“Water quality data from our partners are used to compare against standards, which is often the first step in the management of our water resources. Assessing these data helps us determine the health of a lake or stream, and which management actions may be necessary to improve water quality," says Larson.
The agency is interested in receiving all types of water quality data and information for lakes and rivers – called surface waters – particularly data collected between January 1, 2003, and December 31, 2012. Data must be submitted in a specific format to allow for efficient analysis, and meet the quality assurance and regulatory decision-making needs associated with these programs.
More information about data quality requirements and how to submit data can be found on the DNR’s water quality assessment page.