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This summer the Poteau Valley Improvement Authority (PVIA) will test a new way to improve the clarity and health of the water in Lake Wister, begin the construction of a sophisticated computer model of how the lake works, and test water quality on 20 small streams around the county that eventually deliver their water to the lake.

Lake Wister, best known for its good crappie and catfishing, summer camping, and water skiing, is also the source of drinking water for most of LeFlore County, as well as parts of Latimer and Haskell counties. PVIA has been treating water from Lake Wister and providing it to towns and rural water districts since 1969. The intervening years have unfortunately seen water quality in the lake decline significantly.

Turning lake water into clean, safe drinking water has become more difficult and expensive.

Several years ago PVIA began a new initiative to both test innovative ways to improve water quality and to better understand the problems the lake faces. In partnership with the Choctaw Nation, the City of Poteau, AES Shady Point, and the US Geological Survey, PVIA has collected four years of new information on both the water flowing into the lake and on the lake itself. [click to continue…]


Lake Wister Information Meeting

On Tuesday May 17, 2014 PVIA will host an informational meeting to answer questions regarding the proposed alum application this summer in Quarry Island Cove as well as other upcoming projects.

The meeting will be held at the main picnic pavilion on Quarry Island, Lake Wister State Park from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm.

A draft Environmental Assessment for the alum project is available for public review. Read the draft EA here.



alum application boat






PVIA is considering a pilot project that would apply alum (aluminum sulfate) to the surface of Quarry Island Cove this summer (2014). Alum will bind with phosphorus, both in the water column, and in lake sediments which would reduce the nutrients available for algae and cyanobacteria (aka blue-green algae) to grow.

The US Army Corps of Engineers must approve the project before it can be implemented. Bio x Design has prepare a draft Environmental Assessment (EA) of the proposed project for PVIA. The draft EA has been submitted to the Corps and it is also now available for public review.

You can read or download the EA from the PVIA website here.

A hard copy is also available for review at the Poteau Public Library.

Written comments may be submitted to PVIA through July 1, 2014.