Mears: State Can Do More To Address Phosphorus

08/08/12 6:06AM Patti Daniels

One of Vermont's leading environmental policy makers says the state hasn't done enough to curb phosphorous pollution in Lake Champlain. For years, phosphorous has been one of the leading problems in the lake.

Environmental Conservation Commissioner David Mears tells VPR's Vermont Edition that the state can do more.

"I don't think we've actually gotten to the point of saying, ‘We've done everything we possibly can to control phosphorous.' I have no question that once we do that, that we will be able to reverse the trend."

But, Mears says, reversing the trend is a long-term proposition. He compares it to getting control of the national debt.

"We need to get our phosphorous budget down to a level-funded budget, and then we can start dealing with the decades, the legacy of phosphorous that's accumulated from years when we contributed more phosphorous than the lake can process and handle."

Mears' comments came in reaction to a new report about the health and ecology of Lake Champlain.

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lake_champlain phosphorous environment
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