Our most immediate need is to design and implement programs to remedy serious problems that threaten the health of our waters.
Our lakes and streams are the lifeblood of our region. The health of the waters depends largely on what flows into them. Today, our waters are under attack. Seasonal algal blooms and invasive plants threaten our waters and are in danger of spreading.
7 Lakes Alliance is at the forefront of Belgrade watershed protection activities. Our approach is rooted in the latest scientific research and is driven by facts. Our scientists have diagnosed the problems and prescribed specific programs to address them.
7 Lakes Alliance has multiple programs to protect the watershed from invasive plants: a milfoil removal program, Adopt A Shoreline, Plant Paddles, and Courtesy Boat Inspections (CBI). STOP Milfoil is a collaborative program headed by 7 Lakes Alliance and the Belgrade Lakes Association (BLA). BLA has raised funds since 2011 to combat variable milfoil in Great Pond and Long Pond. BLA collaborates with 7 Lakes Alliance to hire a milfoil removal team and to educate the community in milfoil identification and prevention.
Good lake stewardship starts on the land. Phosphorus is introduced to our lakes through both natural and man-made sources. Nature has designed our lakes to mitigate naturally occurring phosphorus, but the increased phosphorus introduced by humans has pushed nature past the tipping point. We must invest in watershed wide erosion control projects to further limit the introduction of man-made phosphorus and regain balance in our water ecosystems.
7 Lakes Alliance, in partnership with Colby College and other lake associations, conducts research throughout the watershed. To better understand the drivers of water quality in the Belgrade watershed, the 7 Lakes Alliance conducts water quality monitoring on all seven of the Belgrade Lakes.
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It will require more cooperation, increased collaboration, and far greater resources to ensure that our children and grandchildren enjoy the pristine lakes of our youth, that our natural resources-based economy continues to flourish, and that the Belgrade Lakes Region remains a healthy and uniquely beautiful place to live, grow, and enjoy a high quality of life.