2005  Targeted  Watersheds Grants:
                                      Little  River
                            Tennessee and  North Carolina
The Little River originates in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and flows 60 miles through
the cities of Townsend, Alcoa, and Maryville and portions of Blount, Knox, and Sevier Counties in
southeastern Tennessee. It drains a 380-square-mile area and flows to the Fort Loudon Reservoir.
The Little River supplies drinking water to 100,000 residents in Blount County and adds millions of
dollars in recreation tourism to the local economy. Most of the Little River Watershed is located in
Blount County, one of the most rapidly developing counties in Tennessee. The watershed supports
several state and federally protected species, including the endangered duskytail darter, the fine-
rayed pigtoe mussel,  the threatened snail darter, and the longhead darter. The Little River is one of
the few remaining high quality rivers in East Tennessee. In fact, the section of the river within the
National Park is classified as an Outstanding Natural Resource Water and is used as a benchmark to
assess the health of other Blue Ridge Mountain waterbodies.

Little River is also considered threatened by the State of Tennessee. This threatened designation
means that if current trends continue, within five years the Little River will be impaired. Blount
County's population is expected to grow approximately 40,000 by 2020 to reach 143,000. Due to
increased development and agricultural pressures in the watershed, several tributaries of the Little
River have become impaired.
•  Agricultural activities in the watershed have led to an increase in the sediment and bacterial loads
   to Little River.
•  Failing septic systems in the watershed are contributing to bacterial contamination.
•  Habitat alteration, including reductions in wetland and riparian areas, has increased sediment and
   bacterial loads.
The Little River Water Quality Forum, a consortium of over 23 different
agencies that all have concerns with water quality issues, works to
improve and protect the water quality of the Little River watershed.  The
Targeted Watershed Grant funds will be used to reduce bacteria and
sediment loads to the watershed by:
•  Developing an outreach campaign and providing a cost-share
   program to enable farmers to install Best Management Practices,
   including conservation practices such as rotational grazing, livestock
   exclusion fencing, alternative watering sources and riparian buffers.
•  Developing a residential homeowner educational campaign to
   increase awareness and understanding of the impacts of residential
   land management practices  on water quality. The program will focus
   on maintenance of septic systems, restoration and stewardship  of
   wetlands and riparian buffers, and management of pet waste
   and lawn care.
•  Developing a septic system maintenance cost-share program to
   assist low-income families in repairing failing septic systems.
•  Conducting water quality monitoring to track progress.
Alternative watering system
and heavy use area protection.

The Little River Water Quality Forum (LRWQF) is
dedicated to water quality improvement and protection
initiatives within the Little River Watershed. Efforts of the
LRWQF along with strong community support for
improving and protecting the Little River has resulted in
multiple watershed improvement projects through grants
and partnerships.

LRWQF partners include but are not limited to:
      •  Blount and Knox County Soil Conservation
      •  Keep Blount Beautiful
      •  Blount and Knox Counties
      •  The Cities of Alcoa and Maryville
      •  Foothills Land Conservancy
      •  Little River Watershed Association
      •  University of Tennessee
      •  Natural Resources Conservation Service
      •  University of Tennessee Extension Service
      •  Tennessee Dept. of Environment and
      •  Tennessee Dept. of Agriculture
      •  Tennessee Valley Authority
      •  Great Smoky Mountain  Resource Conservation
         and Development Council
      •  Conservation Fisheries  Incorporated
      •  US Fish and Wldlife Service
      •  US Geological Survey
      •  Blount County Livestock Association
      •  Blount County Chamber of Commerce
      •  Blount County Environmental Health Action
      •  World Wldlife Fund
           For More Information

           Erich Henry
           Senior Soil Conservationist
           Blount County Soil
           Conservation District
                            After restoration, the stream has
                            riparian plantings, which will
                            minimize pollutants, provide
                            habitat and control temperature.
Stream in Springbrook Park
with no riparian cover.
                                                        EPA's Targeted Watersheds Grants
--•  i Pargeted Wat* > sh< >:  Ci anl   ;;• »giai
    petitivi  gi anl i T( - n am desi^ |m d to
icourage < oil iborative, .ommunit-,-  li iv>
ipi >ai hes to meel • lean watei  go ils
                           2005 Targeted Watersheds Grants - Little River