Governor Malloy Declares Lakes Awareness Week

Governor Dannel P. Malloy Declares ‘Lakes Awareness Week’

Reducing spread of aquatic invasive species in CT lakes key for all lake enthusiasts

Hartford, CT July 11 — Gov. Dannel Malloy has proclaimed July 10-16 ‘Lakes Awareness Week’ in Connecticut to help focus public attention on one of the state’s most important and overlooked natural assets.

“With more than 3,200 named lakes, ponds, reservoirs and other bodies of water scattered across Connecticut, we are blessed with a vital resource that yields immense recreational, commercial, environmental and aesthetic benefits,” said Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Commissioner Daniel Esty. “It is incumbent upon all of us to take the necessary steps to restore and protect our beautiful lakes so future generations can fully enjoy these magnificent inland water assets.”

There are many environmental and recreational pressures that take a toll on Connecticut lakes. One of the key issues among state lake user groups and throughout the U.S. is aquatic nuisance species. A number of aquatic plant and animal species found in some CT lakes are nonnative and invasive, and have caused a great deal of damage to the environmental and recreational values those lakes provide. The incidents of species like Eurasian or variable water milfoil and zebra mussels being found in inland waters increase annually and literally millions of dollars are spent to attempt to manage them.

“While the potential threats to Connecticut’s lakes are varied and serious,” said Connecticut Federation of Lakes (CFL) President Larry Marsicano, “the first step to stemming and reversing any decline is relatively straightforward. It starts with Gov. Malloy declares ‘CT Lakes Awareness Week,’ increased public awareness and understanding of the threats, and hinges on a willingness of lake users to implement some of the simple yet proven-effective counter measures. This is particularly true for addressing aquatic invasive species.”

The Connecticut Federation of Lakes has been active in the fight to reduce the spread of aquatic invasive species for many years, including its representation in the CT Invasive Plant Council that worked on legislation making the transport and sale of a number of terrestrial and aquatic invasive species illegal.

Most recently, the CFL has begun promoting the CT Department of Energy and Environmental Protection’s Invasive Investigator program. The program provides training to interested volunteer groups so they can monitor their local boat launches for the presence of the invasive plants and animals on incoming and outgoing boats and trailers. It also provides volunteers with the knowledge and skills to convey to recreational boaters the simple yet proven measures they can take to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species to other lakes.

The CFL encourages you to celebrate Lakes Awareness Week by scheduling an Invasive Investigator training program near your lake. To do so, contact Gwendolynn Flynn of the DEEP at 860-447-4339 or gwendolynn.flynn@ct.gov.

The Connecticut Federation of Lakes is a non-profit lakes advocacy organization whose mission is to work with lake communities across the state for healthier lakes and watersheds on local, state and federal levels. To become a supporter, visit their website at http://www.ctlakes.org.

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For information contact:

Larry Marsicano

President, Connecticut Federation of Lakes 860-354-6928

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Posted on July 9, 2011, in Local and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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