The Flathead Conservation District is currently creating a Watershed Restoration Plan (WRP) for the Flathead-Stillwater watershed (click here to see a map). This is in response to the Flathead-Stillwater TMDL, a report completed at the end of 2014 that lists the streams which have been identified as impaired by the Montana Department of Environmental Quality. The WRP aims to facilitate watershed-wide planning to control Non-Point Source (NPS) pollution.
NPS pollution, unlike pollution from industrial and sewage treatment plants, comes from many diffuse sources and is caused by rainfall or snowmelt moving over and through the ground. As the runoff moves, it picks up and carries away natural and human-made pollutants, finally depositing them into lakes, rivers, wetlands, coastal waters and ground waters. This makes it very difficult to control and mitigate since it’s almost impossible to pinpoint where the pollutants are coming from.
To learn more about the Watershed Restoration Plan and what its development process is like, check out our WRP Fact Sheet.
To learn more about NPS pollution and how you can help control it, visit the EPA Nonpoint Source Pollution website.
Lastly, we’d like to hear from you! If you live in the Flathead Valley (or anywhere shown the the attached image) fill out this short survey to let us know where you see water quality issues in the Flathead Valley and how to best engage our community in NPS pollution and conservation education.
Stay tuned for further updates on the plan and more information about NPS pollution and conservation practices!