By Debby Titus Kelly and Dave Kelly
Great Falls and Seeley Lake, Mont. 

Dear Friends of Seeley Lake, Lets Not Take our Lake For Granted


August 31, 2017

SEELEY LAKE – Fifty-one years ago, the Titus Family spent their first summer at Seeley Lake. It was magical for us all. Not only did we play endlessly in the water but we drank from it and have continued to do so for many years, taking our clean water for granted. However, since the lake was closed, many of us have come to realize how important the lake really is.

Now the lake is polluted. Our family recently had two tests done with the Department of Environmental Quality. They found coliform (feces) levels that were unacceptable to the health of our family. So, we hauled water and eventually installed a water purification system. But that doesn’t solve the problems for the future of our family and community.

As pollution continues to escalate, the lake will become unusable and has already shown signs of illness with the proliferation of waterweeds.

Geologically, young lakes are deep and clear with little or no plant life and the bottom is typically rocky. Old lakes, being well fed, are home to an abundance of plant life, a muddy bottom with decreasing clarity and open water, and eventually turns into a wetland.

In the lake life cycle, Seeley Lake has become middle-aged, with increasing plant life and muddy bottom, decreasing clarity and open water. You might ask yourself if we have accelerated the life cycle of our beautiful lake. We think that we might possibly have done that. However, we can slow or reverse that process by cleaning up the water that is entering the lake.

We understand that the costs of the sewer seem impossible for many people residing in the area. Please remember that the final cost to our community and families will be much higher if we continue on this path of destruction. You might ask yourself if losing the lake is what you want for YOUR family and community. There is money available to help us all with the installation of a sewer and help defray the costs. The actual building of the sewer will boost the local economy with construction jobs and tourist dollars from people who want to come to a clean lake to recreate.

Perhaps you have heard of Bill Nye the Science Guy. He is an American science communicator, television presenter and mechanical engineer. When interviewed on NPR StarTalk radio program, he said, in his opinion, sewers are the most important invention ever. His reasoning is that sewers allow people “to work together to do extraordinary things. We must plan for their use; it is an important thing.” The interview ended when it was said, “you take it for granted until you don’t have it.”

Let’s not take our lake for granted until we don’t have it. Let’s appreciate what we have now, come together to do an extraordinary thing and work to keep it clean for all people, now and in the future.


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