After a hiatus, Ohio EPA started monitoring Ohio’s inland lakes again in 2008. The objectives for monitoring inland lakes are to:
- Track status and trends of lake quality
- Determine attainment status of beneficial uses
- Identify causes and sources of impaired uses
- Recommend actions for improving water quality in impaired lakes
Ohio EPA currently monitors up to 16 lakes per year. Priority is placed on lakes used for public drinking water or used heavily for recreation and suspected of being impaired for either of those uses. Secondary priorities (not currently being addressed because of limited resources) include developing a more robust sampling program, expanding to a wider variety of lakes, exploring the use of remote sensing in the screening of water quality in lakes and attempting to track water quality changes in lakes that might be attributed to Section 319 funding and other watershed water quality improvement efforts.
Ohio EPA participated in U.S. EPA’s National Lake Surveys in 2007 and 2012.
Information on lakes as an emerging program is reported in the Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Reports. Sampling procedures are outlined in the 2019 Inland Lakes Sampling Procedure Manual.
Ohio EPA looks for opportunities to partner with the Surface Water Credible Data (Volunteer Monitoring) Program on lake data collection.