Paw Paw Lake Michigan Project
Paw Paw Lake Bubble Bath
By ANDREW LERSTEN – H-P South Haven Bureau | Posted: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 5:00 am
WATERVLIET – A Watervliet Township-owned property along Paw Paw Lake is the proposed site of equipment to help power aeration bubblers at the bottom of the lake.
The Township Board discussed the proposal Monday night. The aerators are part of a program funded by lake property owners to help improve the lake’s water quality.
The special assessment is further funding chemical applications in the lake to eradicate the Eurasian milfoil weed.
The aeration project is being piloted on the north side of the lake, and will initially involve installation of 25 aerators on the bottom of the northern part of the lake. The concept is that the aerators will help release and circulate oxygen present in lake bottom sediments.
The township is being asked to allow a shed to be built on land it owns along the lake to house up to four compressors to serve the 25 aerators, said Joe Stepich, a township trustee and president of the Paw Paw Lake Association.
Supervisor Dan Hutchins said the board at its February meeting will consider approving a resolution allowing the equipment on township property.
In other matters, the board scheduled a workshop meeting for 10 a.m. Monday to begin work on the township’s 2013-14 fiscal year budget. The new fiscal year starts April 1.
In a related matter, the supervisor said he recommends including $5,000 for the fire department’s plan to begin installing “dry hydrants” along Paw Paw Lake to pump lake water for firefighting. The dry hydrants cost $4,000 each and the fire department plans to have three of them installed this year, Hutchins said.
To hear an interview with Joe Stepich – President of the Paw Paw Lake Association, click [HERE]
We applaud the Paw Paw Lake Association for committing to restore their lake. In 2011 an herbicide treatment was applied to kill invasive weeds that were preventing people from using the lake. While we advocate for herbicide free solutions, we fully understand that people need short term relief. What is inspiring about Paw Paw is their commitment to finding a long-term solution for nutrient overloading by reducing lake-bottom muck.
This spring  we will be installing our Whole Lake Technology™ to a 200 acre portion of the 1000 acre lake. Restoring a lake is not an either/or proposition. Chemical herbicides work in the short-term, but ultimately, restoring the lake’s ability to reduce nutrient overloading holds the most promise for a long-term solution to the problem of invasive weed overgrowth.