APTR to Hold Hearing on Proposed Tahoe Keys Aquatic Weed Test | South Lake Tahoe

Event date:

January 26, 2022 (All day)

The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) will hold a public hearing on January 26 to decide on the next steps for the Tahoe Keys Aquatic Weed Testing Project.

This project is proposed by the Tahoe Keys Property Owners Association (TKPOA) which will analyze which combination of treatment methods best protect Lake Tahoe by most effectively controlling aquatic weeds in the lagoons of the Tahoe Keys and stopping their spread in the Lake.

TRPA, as a co-lead agency with the Lahontan Water Board, will consider certification of the Final Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), which assesses the potential environmental impacts of the proposed control methods, tests and alternatives to the project, and approval of a permit to begin testing.

“Invasive aquatic weeds have continued to spread despite our investments of millions of dollars to contain and eliminate plants,” said Greg Hoover, water quality manager for the Tahoe Keys Property Owners Association. “Recent collaborative efforts to slow the spread in Lake Tahoe have shown promise, but new control methods such as aquatic herbicides that have been shown to be safe and effective in similar settings must be tested to help prevent infestations. widespread around the lake. ”

Aquatic weed infestation covers more than 90 percent of the Tahoe Keys lagoons in summer and provides continuous sources of infestations in the lake itself, including popular recreation areas like Emerald Bay. The growth of invasive weeds degrades water quality and clarity, disrupts the natural ecosystem, hinders boating and recreation, and releases nutrients that can contribute to harmful algal blooms. Despite considerable investment by landowners, weeds continue to spread and authorities and the scientific community are calling for immediate action.

The proposed test project will evaluate a myriad of approaches:

– EPA certified aquatic herbicide test
– Innovative methods such as ventilation and ultraviolet light. Lake Tahoe was the first place to use ultraviolet light to treat aquatic weeds, but it was only used on a small scale.
– Small-scale control methods (such as bottom barriers and diver-assisted aspiration)

Aquatic weeds affect several areas around Lake Tahoe. The lagoons of the Tahoe Keys encompass more than 170 acres (including 900 private docks) and the largest commercial marina on Lake Tahoe, allowing private, public and commercial launch and boating, and therefore account for a large portion of the traffic from Lake Tahoe boats. Due to the scale of the infestation and the number of boats leaving the area, the Tahoe Keys are a likely source of new infestations around the lake.

“It’s not a TKPOA problem, it’s a lake-wide problem,” said Joanne S. Marchetta, executive director of the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency. “We have seen public and private partners come together to improve and fund elements of this environmental process, because everyone understands that we are at a critical point. The results of this decision will influence the future of Lake Tahoe for years to come. “

The APTR public hearing will provide an overview of the proposed project, alternatives to the project and analysis of potential environmental impacts. Thousands of public comments were included in the final analysis and additional opportunities for input will be provided during the virtual meeting.

APTR Board of Directors meeting
January 26, 2022
Documents will be available on Wednesday January 19 here

Learn more about the project at www.tahoekeysweeds.org.

Additionally, the Lahontan Water Board will review resolutions and ordinances related to the testing of Tahoe Keys lagoons aquatic weed control methods at their meeting on January 12-13, 2022. For advice and additional information on the Lahontan Water Board meeting, please visit Lahontan Water Board website: Lake Tahoe Programs | Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board (ca.gov)

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