Protecting and Improving Water Quality in Vermont
January 2015
Photo credit: Cindy Grimes
In This Issue
ANR Secretary 
Deb Markowitz
From the Secretary's Desk: Working Together to Clean Up Vermont's Waters

This past month, Governor Shumlin opened the legislative session with an unprecedented focus on the environment. Understanding that global climate change threatens our way of life, the Governor announced new initiatives aimed at continuing to expand our renewable energy and energy efficiency sectors; creating jobs, saving Vermonters money and doing our part to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions. He also talked at length about our Clean Water Initiative and Lake Champlain restoration plan.


While it is true that the EPA has told Vermont that we need to take significant steps to clean up Lake Champlain... Read more...

Dept. of Forests, Parks and Recreation:
The Connection Between Healthy Forests and Clean Water
- By Gary Sabourin, Watershed Forester
1. Intercept rainfall, protect soils, provide shade
2. Transpiration, nutrient storage, trap air pollutants 3. Filter sediment and other chemicals
4. Infiltration, water and nutrient storage
5. Biological removal of nutrients and pollutants
When you think of Vermont, what comes to mind? Whether it be rolling green mountains, quiet ponds teeming with fish, fiery foliage or even well-manicured village greens, one thing nearly all Vermont landscapes share are trees. Forests dominate Vermont's landscape, covering more than 4.5 million acres, and represent 75% of the state's total land area, making ours the fourth most forested state in the US. All of those trees and forests do more than create beautiful landscapes - they are critical to the health and proper function of watersheds. In fact, clean water has become one of our most important and valuable forest products. Read more...
Dept. of Environmental Conservation:
Cleaning Up the Crown Jewel of Vermont
- By Kari Dolan, Manager of the Vermont DEC Ecosystem Restoration Program
It was a historic moment when Governor Peter Shumlin unveiled his legislative agenda at the inaugural address to the state's General Assembly. In an important gesture of support for clean water, he stated that, "we love our rivers and lakes, from Lake Memphremagog to the Battenkill, from the Lamoille River to Lake Bomoseen, from Otter Creek to the river I grew up on, the Connecticut. And we all revere our crown jewel, Lake Champlain... Read more...
Dept. of Fish & Wildlife
Great Aquatic Habitat Is More Than Just Clean Water
A forested riparian buffer borders a healthy stream
We all know that clean water is important. We need it to drink. We use it for swimming, paddling, fishing, cleansing and playing. Clean water is essential for human health. But have you ever considered how crucial clean water is to other animals, plants or their habitats?

The Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife has long recognized that the health and abundance of fish and wildlife populations is dependent upon the quality of their habitats. Read more . . . .
Ripples Publication to be Reduced to Four Times Per Year
There is a lot of information competing for our attention every day. In order to ensure that Ripples doesn't get lost in the mix, we will be making some changes. Starting with this month's newsletter, we will be publishing Ripples four times per year. This will allow us to provide you with more in-depth articles on important topics relating to the work of the Agency and Vermont's natural environment, as well as more links to information and resources to help you stay involved. We hope you enjoy this new format!
December Photo Contest Winners Announced! 

News About the ANR Photo Contests
Photo credit: Santa Andujar
Congrats to Santa Andujar (@rebelphoto on Instagram), whose photo of birds roosting in a barn window won first place for our last photo contest of 2014.

Visit our December photo contest winners album here to see additional winners and honorable mentions, or view all December entries here.

To the folks who have been participating in our photo contest we thank you! There will be no contest this month but please keep tagging your Vermont landscape, wildlife and nature shots #vtanr on Instagram, as we will continue to share them with our audiences (always with credit) and spotlight the many talented photographers who are out there, taking incredible photos of Vermont's many faces and seasons. Thanks to everyone who has participated! We truly appreciate the opportunity to share with others the beauty and importance of Vermont's natural resources and environment through your eyes and lenses.
Did You Hear?
News Worth Mentioning
Grants for Aquatic Nuisance Species Available to Municipalities

Volunteer water chestnut pull, Lake Carmi
Volunteer water chestnut pull - Lake Carmi
Project year 2015 Application for Aquatic Nuisance Control Grant-in-Aid Grants are available to Vermont municipalities. This grant program supports both native and non-native species management projects. Past supported projects include control of invasive plants such as Eurasian watermilfoil and nuisance native aquatic plants, and aquatic invasive species spread prevention programs like public access "greeter" programs. 

Funding for Grant-in-Aid Grants comes from a portion of annual revenues from state motorboat registration fees and often federal funds.

For a project to be considered for funds in 2015, a completed application package should be submitted in electronic format (pdf preferred) and emailed to David Pasco ([email protected]) by 4:30 pm on Wednesday, February 11, 2015. More information is available here. 

Got a Minute for Habitat? Take this Survey!

At the suggestion of many Vermonters, Vermont Fish & Wildlife is considering a voluntary Habitat Stamp that would help give wild animals - bears, bobcats, bald eagles, and brookies - more (and better) places to call home. The stamp would also enable more Vermonters to support conserving Vermont's wild spaces.

All funds generated would go towards improving statewide habitats and the purchase of new Wildlife Management Areas. Let us know what you think. Take the survey here. 
Have You Heard About Flood Ready Vermont?
The Flood Ready Vermont website, recently developed by staff members of the Vermont Dept. of Environmental Conservation working with stakeholders statewide, acts as a central, online resource for flood-related information and guidance on how communities can reduce damage from flooding. The site has community data, information on funding and stories from other communities working to become flood ready. Bookmark the site, join the listserve and check back often!
Register Today for Vermont Council on Rural Development's Summit on: Creating Prosperity and Opportunity Confronting Climate Change - Feb. 18th

The Vermont Council on Rural Development's Summit on "Creating Prosperity and Opportunity Confronting Climate Change," on February 18, 2015, will bring together scientists, innovative businesses, non-profit, and community leaders, elected officials, public policy advocates, students, and interested residents. Together, over 400 participants will consider the impacts of climate change on Vermont and propose ways to advance prosperity while addressing them. The Summit will focus on how the emerging opportunities will allow us to build a national reputation, create jobs, and attract young people to our rural communities. To find out more, check out the full agenda and visit the website for more about the Initiative. Or, click here to register!
Check Us Out On Social Media!
Stay connected with us for announcements, sustainability tips, hunting and fishing news, scenic landscape and wildlife photos from our staff in the field, public meeting and comment notices and more:
Facebook: Like us at

Twitter: Look for our handle @VTANR

Instagram: For landscape, wildlife and outdoor recreation shots from Vermont residents and visitors, and gorgeous field shots from our staff, follow us on Instagram at @VTANR

Vermont Agency of Natural Resources | 802-828-1294 |
[email protected] |
1 National Life Drive
Davis 2
Montpelier, VT 05620-3901