It’s hard to believe that one person’s expansive lawn or eroding camp road could be a threat to something as large and enduring as a lake. But when added to a shoreline full of similar sites, it can. All stormwater that gets into a lake carries nutrients. Over time, the cumulative impact can be thousands of pounds of pollutants. The result, “death by a thousand cuts,” means algae blooms, fish kills, and the loss of water clarity and spawning habitat.
What is LakeSmart?
LakeSmart is an education and reward program that helps lakefront homeowners manage landscapes in ways that protect water quality. The program is free, non-regulatory, and voluntary. Trained volunteers perform property assessments for participating homeowners. Homeowners receive individualized suggestions for keeping pollutants in stormwater out of lake waters. Sites that score well earn the coveted LakeSmart Award, consisting of two distinctive signs that can be posted at the waterfront and driveway. The signs identify the homes of good stewards and illustrate what lake-friendly living looks like.
To be “LakeSmart” means that the homeowners are using natural landscaping strategies to protect their lake. LakeSmart landscaping mimics nature’s rich mosaic with plants, shrubs, winding paths, and shady trees – so it looks great, enhances privacy, and protects property values, wildlife habitat, water quality, recreational opportunities and the vitality of local economies.
If each homeowner does a little, the sum of many small actions adds up to a lot of lake protection. And being LakeSmart is the place to start!
30 Mile partners with Maine Lakes as a regional LakeSmart “HUB” support center, helping our lake associations deliver LakeSmart education, property-by-property and shore-by-shore to create a conservation ethic across the lake community.
Request an Evaluation Today!
If you are interested in having a LakeSmart evaluation completed for your property, please contact the following LakeSmart team coordinators in the 30 Mile watershed:
- Flying Pond: Cindy Ripley (email@example.com)
- Parker & David Ponds: Deb Cayer (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Androscoggin Lake: Buddy Cummings (email@example.com)
If your lake or pond is not listed above, please contact 30 Mile’s Program Manager, Whitney Baker (firstname.lastname@example.org / 207-860-4043) to schedule your evaluation.
For more information about Maine Lakes’ LakeSmart Program & landowner resources visit: www.lakes.me/lakesmart