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2023 Keoka Water Quality Testing Synopsis




By Charlie Tarbell


In a nutshell, Keoka's water quality in 2023 was worse than the long-term trend. Hopefully, that result is anomalous because weather conditions (e.g., rain frequency and intensity) during the summer of 2023 would have predicted this outcome for water testing. Usually, heavy rain --> runoff --> water quality issues. All things considered, Keoka's key stats for 1) clarity; 2) surface water phosphorus; 3) chlorophyll-a; and 4) deep water phosphorus during 2023 were considered to be stable or improving relative to the long-term trend (even though they were worse than the recent past). Plus, the incidence of algae was low to moderate.

 

Still, Keoka's water quality prescription remains:

  •     Continue vigilance in protecting the 100-foot buffer zone around the lake. Stop erosion and promote rain infiltration.

  • Get a LakeSmart evaluation of your property if you have not yet done so. If it’s been more than 10 years since you received a LakeSmart Award, get a new evaluation.

  • Increase vigilance around tributaries and upland development that could continue to tributary runoff.

  • Maintain good communication and cooperation with municipal officials around mitigating roadside hot spots that could contribute to runoff.

  • Pump your septic system regularly and know what is going into it -- no phosphorus soaps or plastics.

 

Thanks to all KLA members who are striving to protect our lake. See the full report here.

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