The Thornapple River Watershed Management Program brought together agencies and organizations from throughout the watershed to assess, study and develop recommendations to sustain the health of the Thornapple River, its tributaries and the lands surrounding them. This initiative came into effect to analyze the health of the watershed and to come together with problem solving techniques to improve the well being of the watershed not just in terms of pollution of the water but as well as preserving the wildlife and habitats in the watershed.
The main outcome of the program was the development of the Thornapple River Watershed Plan, which assesses the water quality of the entire Thornapple River by analyzing the pollution causes as well as sources. The various pollution levels impair drinking water, fisheries, recreation uses (swimming, kayaking, boating and canoeing) as well as wildlife and critical areas that have been identified for the need for improvement.
In 2017, the Conservation District recieved a grant from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative for Thornapple River Watershed Management Plan implementation. This grant provides funding for a watershed coordinator and to begin implementing programs to combat the issues within the watershed. Work is currently underway in three of the most impaired sub-watersheds of the TRW.
You can access the Thornapple River Watershed Management Plan here.