Lake Erie Retrospective Analysis
Lake Erie is vitally important to the health, quality of life and prosperity of farmers, Ontario families and communities. Over the last several decades, Lake Erie has been threatened by declining water quality and increasingly harmful algal blooms from rising inputs of phosphorus.
The Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association (OSCIA) has played a key role in the delivery of water quality cost-share and education opportunities in the Lake Erie basin for many years. In partnership with OMAFRA, OSCIA has evaluated past program participation to better understand the water quality actions that were supported with cost-share funding between 2005 and 2018 in this region. The data provides a big picture look at water quality projects and aims to help the agricultural sector to assess progress in meeting phosphorus reduction targets, and inform the development of future environmental stewardship programs that are focused on water quality improvements in this region. This work builds upon previous retrospective data analyses and other past and ongoing research studies that have utilized OSCIA cost-share program data to identify BMP adoption trends across all phases of cost-share program delivery.
These programs are just one of many tools in the Lake Erie basin that are helping to accelerate environmental action in support of Lake Erie’s ecological health and resiliency.
Over 13 years of project data was analyzed across 6,600 water quality improvement projects in the Lake Erie basin. The information contained within this report may be helpful in informing the needs of agri-environmental education and cost-share programming in the Lake Erie basin.
Interactive Lake Erie Basin Story Map
A GIS StoryMap was developed to summarize key BMP project trends identified in the Lake Erie Retrospective Analysis. This tool helps to showcase the efforts of Lake Erie farmers in addressing water quality risks that were identified in their Environmental Farm Plan (EFP).
This project was funded by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, as part of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership.