Clear Lake Watershed Management Plan

The Clear Lake Integrated Watershed Management Plan (CLIWMP) was prepared by the Water Resources Department of the Lake County Department of Public Works. The need for a guidance document to manage Clear Lake and its watershed has long been recognized, and the plan was completed under a CALFED Watershed Program grant awarded to the West Lake Resource Conservation District. The CLIWMP was adopted by the Lake County Board of Supervisors on March 2, 2010.

The goal of the CLIWMP is to plan and work toward an environmentally and economically healthy watershed that benefits the community and is sustainable for future generations. The CLIWMP provides background on existing lake and watershed conditions and management. It uses a systemic approach to multiple watershed issues including water quality and the land use practices that affect it; natural habitats and ecosystem restoration; floodplain, lakeshore, and lakebed management; climate change; and economic uses such as tourism, recreation, and water supply. This background information is used to identify opportunities to improve watershed conditions and provide guidance for continuing watershed planning efforts. A series of actions are recommended for each resource or management topic. These actions take the form of either recommended policies for adoption by the County and/or specific projects or programs that should be undertaken by watershed stakeholders.

Topics include:

  • Surface and ground water quality and supply
  • Watershed education and outreach
  • Land use impacts from agriculture and development
  • Erosion and sedimentation
  • Fire hazard and management
  • In-lake, wetlands, riparian and upland wildlife and wildlife habitat
  • Lake and watershed recreation
  • Ecotourism
  • Aquatic and terrestrial invasive species
  • Lake floodplain management
  • Lake management
  • Climate change

Watershed Assessments

In addition to the CLIWMP, watershed assessments were prepared for the Kelsey, Scotts and Middle Creek watersheds. The purpose of these assessments are to collect and integrate information on past and present watershed conditions and management. The assessments are intended as tools to educate landowners on watershed conditions and management needs. They also describe how watershed conditions affect Clear Lake, immediately downstream of the watersheds. The assessments are a collection of available information on the watershed, help to identify data gaps, and provide a basis for watershed planning and identify necessary watershed projects.