DNR says phosphorus seriously affecting Wisconsin watersDNR Secretary Cathy Stepp says the state is taking seriously the issue of phosphorus pollution in rivers and streams.
By: By Chuck Quirmbach, Wisconsin Public Radio, Superior Telegram
DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp says the state is taking seriously the issue of phosphorus pollution in rivers and streams.
The EPA released a study this week that concludes 55 percent of the river and stream miles in the U.S. are in poor condition for aquatic life. The figure for Wisconsin and other states in the Midwest is 59 percent. The study says phosphorus pollution from farms and other sources is a big reason for the water quality problem, and environmental groups say the state DNR needs to move ahead with phosphorus rules passed a few years ago.
DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp says department staff are working with those affected by the regulations, “working out adaptive management plans, and other realistic, real-life applications of the rule to make sure we'll be able to have emitters comply.”
Stepp says one thing the state plans to do is more education of farmers on best management practices, and she says the DNR is moving as fast as it can. The EPA says too much nitrogen and phosphorus in water can lead to large blooms of algae and fish kills.