Friday, May 8, 2015

Cleaning your Stormwater

What you can do to help
Activities like walking your dog or driving your car can leave pollutants on the ground that can be washed off in rain water. All the hard surfaces you use every day, such as parking lots, driveways, rooftops, and sidewalks, dramatically increase the rate and amount of runoff. What each of us can do to reduce pollutants in storm water runoff might seem small, but it can all add up to reducing the problems caused by storm water. Here are some ways you can help:

Reduce the Rate and Volume of Runoff

Roof Runoff
  •  Have roof runoff to the lawn instead of driveway, sidewalk, or the street
  •  Use rain barrels at your downspout and recycle for irrigation
Lawn Runoff

  •  Aerate lawn
  •  Maintain a healthy lawn
All Sources of Runoff
  •  Consider building rain gardens to capture runoff from roofs, lawns, and driveways

Q. What is a rain garden?
A shallow depression that is planted with deep-rooted native plants and grasses. It is positioned near a runoff source like a downspout or driveway to prevent rainwater runoff from reaching the sewer system.

Reduce Pollutants in Storm Water Runoff

Pet waste
  • Don’t let pet waste accumulate in your yard
  • Bury or flush it down the toilet
Pollution from Cars
  • Keep cars tuned up and repair leaks,
  • Dispose of fluids properly
  • Reduce a few trips with your car each week by walking, biking, or riding the bus
  • Use commercial car washes. The grime on a car has high concentration of pollutants
Lawn and Yard Maintenance 
  •  Keep leaves and yard waste out of street.
  •  Compost leaves if possible or pile on terrace for city pick-up
  •  Do not blow grass clippings onto street, sidewalk or driveway
  •  Do not overuse pesticides and fertilizers
  •  Buy phosphorus free fertilizers