Coming Soon: Clean Lakes Program Advocacy Campaign
The North American Lake Management Society (NALMS) is excited to share with you some information about an advocacy campaign for restoring funding to, and enhancing, Section 314 of the Clean Water Act (CWA).
The North American Lakes Management Society (NALMS) 314 Working Group has been developing the elements of an advocacy campaign related to restoring funding to Section 314 of the CWA, to once again allow for diagnostic-feasibility studies to be conducted on lakes and ponds across the country. Another component of the campaign is to enhance Section 314 by including funding for preservation and protection efforts for high quality waters.
The recently released results from the 2017 National Lakes Assessment support the need for an enhanced 314 Clean Lakes Program (https://nationallakesassessment.epa.gov/webreport/). The 2017 report indicates that nutrient pollution remains a widespread stressor with almost half of the nation’s lakes in poor condition for elevated levels of nitrogen and phosphorus. Similarly, algal biomass, measured as chlorophyll a, was rated poor in 45% of lakes, and excess algae associated with hypereutrophic conditions was observed in 24% of lakes. The algal toxin microcystin was detected in 21% of lakes, and 2% of lakes, or approximately 4,400 lakes, exceeded the EPA recreational water quality criterion for microcystin.
To this end, the NALMS 314 Working Group has hired an intern to support the efforts of the working group. Skye Embray, a college senior, is taking the lead in developing materials to communicate with partner organizations, and she is developing public outreach materials centered around the importance of the 314 program and the value of lakes to the National, state and local economies and the American way of life.
Notably, Skye will be developing and implementing a survey or series of surveys to lake managers regarding existing financial resources and existing programs for in-lake management and assisting in the design of the advocacy campaign and developing supportive multi-media products. Multi-media products will include brochures, power-point presentations, information kits and a compilation of links to resources that will be useful to the campaign. The intent is for these products to be used by lake advocates across the country to campaign for restoring funding to, and enhancing, Section 314 of the CWA. She will also be reviewing the 2022 Government Accountability Office report and factoring in considerations related to those findings.
What to look for in early-mid September
- Fact sheets, brochures and other informational resources geared to stakeholder groups related to this effort, and recommendations for mobilizing stakeholders
- Packaged slideshows with narration for various audiences
- A survey for state agencies and their collaborators on what is needed on the state level if funding is re-appropriated
- A template letter for constituents to use in contacting their congressional representatives to express their support for re-funding and enhancing Section 314 of the Clean Water Act.
To learn more background behind the NALMS 314 Working Group efforts, visit our Enhanced 314 Clean Lakes Program Position Statement at https://www.nalms.org/nalms-position-papers/enhanced-314-clean-lakes-program-position-statement/.