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Tips for Green Living

Reducing Water Pollution Requires a Community Effort

Most water pollution in Ohio comes from storm water. As storm water flows, it picks up dirt and debris, lawn chemicals and pet waste, road salt and motor oil.

From there, it flows untreated through underground pipes to the nearest stream.

“Managing a community’s storm water runoff requires the participation of all residents. Effective management requires a community effort,” says Township Engineer John Davies who is working with area jurisdictions to bring storm water awareness to local communities.

Washington Township has reviewed its own practices and trained its public works staff in methods for limiting detrimental runoff. Residents can do their part to reduce storm water pollution by following some basic guidelines.

Ways to Reduce Storm Water Pollution: No Dumping

  • Be a good pet owner. Pick up after your pet in your own yard and carry a bag with you when walking your dog.
  • Take your car to the car wash. When you wash your car at home, detergent, wax and other chemicals drain to storm sewers and streams. Car washes drain polluted water to the sanitary sewer where it is then treated.
  • If you wash your car at home, use small amounts of low-phosphorus detergent
  • Collect and recycle vehicle fluids such as motor oil and antifreeze.
  • Examine the chemicals you use on your lawn and look for safe alternatives.
  • Clear grass clippings, leaves and debris from catch basins and drainages ditches.
  • Do not fertilize or apply pesticides near a creek or stream bed. Maintain a buffer strip of native grasses or flowers to slow runoff and filter pesticides and herbicides.
  • Limit the use of de-icing materials in winter.

Turning Green

Simple Steps that Make a Greener World

Don’t like the price of gas? Rideshare Ohio offers the chance to economize and conserve resources by sharing rides with others. For details, go to http://www.rideshareohio.com/ or follow the link on the township’s web site.

Electronic Recycling and Donation

Consumers electronics are everywhere – from alarm clocks, to iPods, computers, cell phones and digital cameras.

Most of the 2.2 million tons of electronic waste makes its way annually to landfills where toxic metals can leach into groundwater or be released into the air through incineration. Here are some alternatives:

www.epa.gov - Provides extensive information about e-cycling. From the homepage, click on Wastes, go to Electronics Recycling under the heading “Recycling/Pollution Prevention.”

http://www.earth911.org/ - From the Electronics page, click on “Donate It” for a list of organizations that accept donations. With the changeover to digital television, some charities will not accept analog televisions. Be sure to call before you donate.

www.collectivegood.com - provides a simple way to donate mobile phones to a list of charities ranging from the Humane Society to presidential campaigns.

http://www.itemcycle.com/ - Enter your electronic device to find out how to recycle your item.

http://www.earth911.org/ - Offers a list of manufactures that accept and recycle their own brand for free or a small charge. Click on the “proper recycling” link from the Electronics page.

http://www.eiae.org/ - E-cycling Central lists 39 public and private programs in Ohio, including five in the Dayton area.

Best Buy Stores - Recycling drop-off kiosks accept old cell phones, rechargeable batteries, and ink-jet cartridges at no cost.

Composting

Make composting a part of your routine. Yard trimmings and food residuals together constitute 23 percent of the US waste stream. Compost enriches the soil, helps with air quality by diverting materials from landfills, and can reduce the need for water, fertilizers and pesticides. Detailed information on several approaches to composting is available at:

http://www.epa.gov/epawaste/conserve/rrr/composting/index.htm

Greenscaping

If you’re thinking about making landscaping changes to your yard, the EPA offers information that will help you make choices that are environmentally beneficial. Information is found at:

http://www.epa.gov/greenerproducts/identifying-greener-landscaping-choices

 

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