top of page

Water Quality Committee Work

Over the years the Water Quality Committee has led many efforts to improve and monitor the water quality of the Tellico Reservoir Watershed. Most noteworthy of these efforts was the effort to improve the effluent from the Madisonville Water treatment plant. This effort took many years, coordination with other government and private agencies, and several court cases.

WATeR has also worked with other agencies to improve agricultural practices to lessen pollution runoff into the lake. These efforts are on-going. Agricultural runoff pollution is significant in this watershed because much of the watershed is located in rural, agricultural, areas.

Perhaps the most critical and unaddressed problem facing the watershed today is residential pollution runoff from the communities that have been built around Tellico Lake. Residents must be educated in how to avoid runoff and must be encouraged to change their lawn fertilizer methods and to grow boundaries that will lessen the runoff.


It can be done.

WATeR Partners with Local Farmers to Improve Water Quality

Learn how the WATeR Committee has worked with State and Federal Agencies to control erosion and keep cattle out of Bat Creek in order to improve the water quality of Bat Creek and Tellico Lake.

Click here to view the video. 


Information on Water Quality Projects

Water Clarity and Algae

We all expect to have clear blue water, but unfortunately, it has been observed in recent years that the water takes on a green tint, especially in the summer. Read more to see the studies WATeR has undertaken on this topic.

Read new report on algae in lake here.


Streambed Improvements

WATeR monitors the water quality of Tellico Lake's tributary streams. It is important work because the streams are often the source of major water pollution.

Read more


Hydrilla has been found in Tellico Lake

WATeR has found hydrilla in a few places in Tellico Lake. It is an invasive plant. Hydrilla is considered a noxious pest because it grows so rapidly, out competing and eliminating native species, and forming surface mats that hinder recreation, navigation, and water intakes. Read more here. And here. WATeR has been in contact with TVA about the hydrilla and they have confirmed its presence here. Next steps are not decided. If you think you have seen hydrilla send an email to


Asian Carp Migration in Tennessee River System

WATeR is tracking the migration of Asian Carp in the Lower Tennessee River System and the plans and progress to prevent them from reaching East Tennessee

Read more.

WATeR Resolution to TVPOA

TWRA webpage on Asian Carp

Cattle Watering

WATeR is working with TVA and local cattlemen to implement better, less polluting, methods for watering cattle.

Read more


PCB in the Lake

WATeR has been checking TDEC's PCB data for years. And it is not as bad as it used to be.

Read more

Read full report

Shoreline Erosion

Shoreline erosion is usually caused by wind and boat wakes. Erosion can cause land loss, tree falls and increased turbidity.

Read more

Water Quality in Embayments

WATeR has done a study to determine if it is safe to swim in Tellico Reservoir. Bottom line, avoid shallow embayments after heavy rains.

Read more

Read full report

bottom of page