TALLAHASSEE – The Florida Department of Environmental Protection held a public meeting today to further the development of water quality restoration goals for Lake Talquin to address an excess amount of nutrients and an insufficient amount of dissolved oxygen in the lake.
“Lake Talquin is an important natural resource for the community and for the state,” said Tom Frick, director of the Division of Environmental Assessment and Restoration. “These meetings provide an opportunity for DEP to work alongside stakeholders and the public to identify appropriate goals for the restoration of this important waterbody.”
The restoration goal under development is known as a TMDL, or total maximum daily load. A TMDL defines the amount of a certain pollutant that may be present in the waterbody in order for water quality to meet state standards. At this meeting, DEP representatives reviewed final revisions to the model being used to develop the TMDL and solicit stakeholder and public comment.
Nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorous naturally exist in the water and support the growth of aquatic plants, which provide food for the rest of the ecosystem. When too much nitrogen and phosphorous enter the environment, however, excessive algal growth can occur. Algal blooms and algal mats can cause detrimental impacts to waterbodies such as smothering habitat and depleting the oxygen in the water, which is essential for the survival of aquatic animals.
Located west of Tallahassee, Lake Talquin is approximately 10,000 acres and the centerpiece of Lake Talquin State Park. The park boasts excellent fishing and a 650-foot boardwalk that rims the water’s edge. The lake is a recreational resource for the state, providing opportunities for fishing, hiking, wildlife viewing and bird watching.
More information on the restoration goals can be found here.