Friday, September 16, 2011

Volunteers Needed for Lake George’s West Brook

The Lake George Association (LGA) and the Southern Adirondack Audubon Society (SAAS) are sponsoring a volunteer event at West Brook tomorrow Saturday, September 17, 2011 from 9 am to 1 pm. Volunteers are needed to remove invasive shrubby honeysuckle and to replace it by planting native species.

The LGA is working on a management plan to maintain the banks of West Brook, which is centered between the north and south parcels of the West Brook Conservation Initiative, a stormwater treatment complex and environmental park currently being designed and constructed.
Volunteers should meet at the end of West Brook Road in the village of Lake George, nearest to the Lake. At this location, along the banks of the brook, a number of invasive species are taking over, including shrubby honeysuckle. Volunteers should bring work gloves, clippers, loppers, and hand saws, labeled with the name of the owner. A limited number of tools will be available on site. Refreshments and lunch will be provided.

About the West Brook Conservation Initiative

The LGA formed a partnership with two other environmental organizations, the Lake George Land Conservancy and the Fund for Lake George, and two municipalities, the village of Lake George and Warren County, to create the West Brook Conservation Initiative, a project that will protect Lake George for many years to come. The resulting environmental park will address stormwater runoff from Route 9 and surrounding properties. The park’s natural filtering system will treat millions of gallons of stormwater before it enters the Lake.

Every time it rains, stormwater carries sediment and along with it pollutants, chemicals, and nutrients into Lake George. Currently, fifty percent of all contaminants entering the South Basin of Lake George enter via West Brook, and from there they travel throughout the Lake. Sodium levels have doubled in only 20 years and total phosphorus levels have increased as well. The West Brook delta, the result of excessive sediment in the brook, has grown to over 7,000 square meters and is easily viewed from the shoreline. (In 1955, there was no delta.)

Photo: LGA Volunteers remove trash during a 2009 stream clean-up event at West Brook.

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