Since its founding in 1963, the Lake Champlain Committee has distinguished itself with the quality and tenor of its advocacy. LCC links its positions to sound science and brings a whole-lake perspective to issues.
We not only highlight problems, but we help craft solutions. We work with citizens, businesses, farmers, communities, and governments to protect and restore lake health. LCC focuses on three strategic areas: clean water, a healthy lake and access to the lake.
Clean, healthy waterways are vital to our daily lives, from the water we drink to the recreational opportunities for which Lake Champlain is known and loved. A clean lake is one that provides high-quality drinking water and recreational opportunities free from worry about water quality problems.
In some regards Lake Champlain is clean — it currently provides drinking water for approximately 188,000 residents throughout the basin — yet by other measures there is much work needed. Some recreational opportunities are impaired due to water quality concerns. Excess nutrients in some areas of the lake trigger unsightly algae blooms and weed growth. Blooms of toxin-producing cyanobacteria have led to beach closings, particularly in Missisquoi Bay, but sporadically in other locations as well. Other beaches have been closed because of high bacterial counts. Large game fish are not suitable for consumption due to high body burdens of toxic chemicals. The Lake Champlain Committee is working hard to address all these issues and protect and restore Lake Champlain for this and future generations.
A healthy lake depends on a balanced ecosystem — one where the impacts of invasive species are minimized, where healthy populations of native species exist, and where no single species comes to dominate. Humans affect the health of the lake by changing habitat, spreading species to new environments, and stocking fish into the lake to develop or maintain sport fisheries. Global warming also presents a threat to the ongoing health of Lake Champlain.