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Lake Manassas Showcased as Part of National Lakes Survey


- - Today, EPA along with Virginia environmental agencies demonstrated techniques being used around the country this summer to survey the condition of the nation’s lakes. The “Survey of the Nation’s Lakes” is a federal and state partnership to assess conditions by studying 909 lakes, ponds and reservoirs whose profiles are representative of all lakes in the United States.

Lake Manassas is one lake that is being sampled as part of the national lakes survey, and is also the main drinking water supply for the City of Manassas.

“EPA and states are teaming up to complete a first-ever national survey of America’s lakes, ponds, and reservoirs. Our scientific report card will measure the health and well-being of these well-loved water bodies and help citizens and governments take new actions to prevent pollution and increase effectiveness,” said Benjamin H. Grumbles, EPA’s assistant administrator for water.

“As an addition to Virginia’s active water quality monitoring program, this study will provide useful information about the general health of our lakes and ponds,” said David K. Paylor, director of Virginia Department of Environmental Quality. “The survey includes new study areas and will collect data that has not normally been collected by most states.”

In Virginia, EPA’s mid-Atlantic regional biology team working with the state’s Department of Environmental Quality staff will conduct the water quality sampling, habitat assessments, and other data collection. The nationwide survey is designed to estimate the percentage of the nation’s lakes that are in good, fair, or poor condition. It examines ecological, water quality, and recreational indicators, and will also assess how widespread stressors including nitrogen, phosphorus, and acidification are across the country.

Participants in the hands-on demonstration at Lake Manassas included Ben Grumbles, EPA, Preston Bryant, Virginia’s secretary of Natural Resources and David K. Paylor, director of the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality.

The report on the lakes survey will be released in 2009. For more information on the lakes survey visit . This study is part of a larger EPA effort to assess coastal waters, rivers and wetlands. A similar survey, for wadeable streams, was completed in 2006. The plan is to repeat the surveys on a five-year cycle to analyze the success of efforts to manage and improve overall water quality.


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