DNR finds excess sediment in Upper Fox and Wolf River basins

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Oshkosh, Wis. (WBAY-TV) A study about local quality of water is released in an informational meeting Wednesday.

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and the Environmental Protection Agency set out in 2013 to study phosphorous and sediment levels in the Upper Fox and Wolf River Basins.

The basins reach 18 counties.

The DNR and the EPA identified the broad sources of sediment runoff and discharge as cities, rural areas, septic systems, and industry.

The DNR says it's leading to concerning levels of phosphorous and sediment in the waters

"It contributes to the algae bloom that we're seeing which drives down oxygen and depletes habitat, etc," said Keith Marquardt, DNR Water Resource Specialist.

The findings could potentially lead to regulations for waters like Lake Winnebago. That helped attract a large crowd to Wednesday's meeting.

"Everybody has to play a part making reductions to that nutrient load systems," Greg Baneck, Outagamie County Conservationist, said. "So you know it's going to come as a cost to everybody who contributes runoff into the system."

Hortonville has concerns about those costs and the DNR plans to hear its input.

"Take these numbers and data, meet with stakeholders and start developing a implementation plan," said Marquardt.

Public hearings on the issue will be scheduled next.