Local governments sign off on Tahoe restoration plan

Listen to the story

Local governments sign off on Tahoe restoration plan

Emerald_bay

A collaborative effort to restore Lake Tahoe has been finalized after a decade in the making.

A collaborative effort to restore Lake Tahoe has been finalized after a decade in the making.

An interlocal agreement was finalized last week to implement the Lake Tahoe Total Maximum Daily Load or TMDL. Washoe and Douglas Counties, along with the state department of transportation, have agreed to help reduce the storm water runoff from roads and parking lots that's reducing lake clarity.

"One of the big things is sweeping the roads. As you know, in the winter, they put down a lot of sand for traction to keep people from sliding on the roads. If they don't pick that up again, then the cars run over it back and forth and grind it into super fine particles, and then that just flushes down into the lake."

That's Dave Gaskin, the deputy administrator for the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection. The agreement is part of a larger effort to restore the lake's historic clarity level over the next 65 years.

"It was at about 100 feet and we're currently in the mid-70s, so we're trying to get back down to that 100-foot level."

Gaskin says the Lake Tahoe TMDL is an example of several agencies working together to better the health of the lake. Earlier this week at the annual Tahoe Summit, Keynote Speaker Al Gore called for community collaboration to combat the effects of climate change.