Title: Grand River Conservation Authority, Clean Up Rural Beaches 1994 progress report Ryan, Tracey During the Rural Beaches Program in the mid eighties, the impact of livestock wastes and residential septic systems on surface water quality were documented in three subwatersheds in the Grand River. The three watersheds studied were the Upper Nith, Upper Conestogo and Upper Speed Rivers. Since 1991 the Grand River Conservation Authority has participated in the delivery of the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Energy's Clean Up Rural Beaches (CURB) Program, The program provides funds to assist rural landowners in the reduction of surface water pollution from livestock wastes and septic systems. During 1994 approximately $280,000 was provided to landowners to implement 57 water quality improvement projects. Since 1991 approximately$900,000 has been provided for 186 projects in the three target watersheds. In 1994 the grant provided financial assistance for the construction of 25 manure storage systems, 14 livestock access restriction projects, 10 septic systems and 8 milkhouse waste storage systems. All but one of the projects was constructed in the Upper Nith River and Upper Conestoga River watersheds. Water quality monitoring revealed that the Upper Speed River watershed has the best overall water quality, while the Nith River exhibited the poorest overall quality. The overall water quality in the Nith River and Conestogo River watersheds was unacceptable. The samples consistently failed to meet any of the MOEE guidelines and objectives for surface water quality. Despite the relatively poor results, the long term trends indicate that some improvement is occurring. Many stations in the watersheds have shown continued decreases in both phosphorus and E. coli. Monitoring upstream and downstream of three project sites supported the conclusion that water quality continues to improve for years after the source of contamination is removed. The buffer strip project and livestock restriction project have continued to record water quality improvements even though the remedial measures were implemented more than 2 years ago. http://hdl.handle.net/10214/14901 1995 Queen's Printer for Ontario, Crown Copyright, Non-Commercial Use Permitted Queen's Printer for Ontario