Even if you don't live near water, excess fertilizer from
your lawn gets into our water supply and can be toxic to plants and animals.
Hosing your driveway off for 15 minutes wastes 150
gallons of water—and sends pollutants like motor oil into the river.
One quart of motor oil can pollute 250,000 gallons of
river water. So use a large pan if you are changing motor oil yourself.
Most storm drains empty into local rivers. The
fertilizers, motor oil, and pesticides you hose of the pavement at your
house pollutes our fresh water.
Pet waste contains e. coli. Even if you don't live near
water, leaving pet waste on the ground increases the risk of harmful
bacteria in local rivers and lakes.
Even if you don't live near water, pesticides from your
lawn can wash off and pollute rivers—harming wildlife and water
Washing your car in your driveway can pollute fresh
water. All the detergent and oil you rinse into the storm drain ends up in
Even if you don't live near water, the salt you use on
your driveway in winter ends up in local rivers and streams. Pour
Everyone lives in a watershed. What happens on your
property can affect the entire watershed and beyond.
Rain gardens and rain barrels can be used to effectively
manage stormwater. A rain barrel attached to a downspout collects rainwater
that can be used to water lawns and gardens. Rain gardens are designed to
collect stormwater and allow it to infiltrate into the ground.
Increased stormwater runoff ends up in rivers, streams
and lakes. It can degrade the natural stream channel, increase flooding, and
pollute area waterways.
Sediment is one of the leading pollutants in local rivers
and streams. Preventing soil erosion on your property will help to reduce
sediment loading into our water resources.
During periods of heavy rain in urbanized areas, like the
Greater Lansing Region, rainwater flows directly into area waterways, such
as the Red Cedar and Grand Rivers.
The Great Lakes contain nearly 20 percent of the world's
and 90 percent of the United State's fresh surface water supply. Reducing
pollutants in your backyard can help keep the Great Lakes clean.
What can you do? There are lots of things you can do as a
family to protect water quality: volunteer in a river clean up, choose
natural cleaning products, clean up spills on your driveway and pick up and
properly dispose of pet waste. Contact one of the organizations below to
Did you know? that because of impervious surfaces like
pavement and rooftops, a typical city block generates more than 5 times more
stormwater runoff than a woodland area of the same size? Runoff carries
pollutants such as oil, dirt, chemicals and lawn fertilizers directly to
streams and rivers. (from epa.gov)