What Can I Do
After looking through this website many of you may be thinking, "How can I help out with this problem?" There are simple things that all of us can do to protect and improve the water quality of the streams, rivers and lakes in the Marion area.
Every person really does make a difference!!
The following list is just a few of the things you can do to protect our waterways. If you look around your home and neighborhood we are sure you will find others. Please feel free to contact Mike Graft of the City of Marion Engineering Department at 765-668-4401 if you have any questions about any of these things, or if you would like to share any ideas you come up with.
First and foremost:
Get Involved. This is one of the most important things you can do to protect our streams, rivers and lakes. Make an effort to find out what is going on in your community regarding water quality issues. You can do this by attending public meetings, joining a local watershed organization or scheduling a time to meet with local officials. The City encourages you to ask questions when you see things going on you are curious about. To find out more about how you can get involved contact Mike Graft of the City of Marion Engineering Department at 765-668-4401 or refer to the Stormwater Contacts page.
Around the house:
Disconnect and properly route downspouts at your homes and businesses. Downspouts connected to the sewer system can contribute to sewer back ups and combined sewer overflows. For additional information please refer to the Downspout Disconnection page.
Properly maintain your septic system. If you have a septic system at your home it is important ensure that it is functioning properly. Please refer to the following websites for information on properly maintaining your septic system:
Dispose of household chemicals and pet waste properly. Dispose of your home chemicals such as paint, solvents, cleaning agents, and mercury properly. For information about how to dispose of these materials contact the East Central Indiana Solid Waste District at 765-640-2535. Never pour any of these materials into a sewer or storm drain. You may put small amounts of pet waste in the trash, the toilet, or bury it.
Fix plumbing leaks and conserve water. A tiny leak can add up to a gallon in minutes. Saving water saves you money and puts less water in the sewer. Less water in the sewer makes it less likely to overflow in a storm.
Sweep up debris on sidewalks instead of washing it away with a garden hose. By volume sediment is the largest pollutant entering the nation's streams and rivers. The dirt and gravel that runs off of our sidewalks and streets has a negative impact on the water quality of our streams and rivers.
Drive less. Take the bus, carpool, ride a bike, or plan your trips to be more efficient. You'll save money on gasoline and reduce street pollution washing into our streams and rivers.
Dispose of your motor oil, antifreeze, batteries, and other waste products properly. There are currently numerous locations to recycle these materials. For information about how to dispose of these materials contact the East Central Indiana Solid Waste District at 765-640-2535.
Keep your car tuned and periodically check for fluid leaks. This keeps oil from leaking onto the ground and can increase gas mileage - saving you money and protecting the environment by reducing water and air pollution.
Wash your car or other outdoor equipment at a commercial carwash instead of at your home. The grease, oil and other chemicals that we wash off of these items can run off of our driveways and lawns and enter the storm sewer system and eventually discharge to local streams and rivers. Even the soaps we use to clean these items can cause problems for some aquatic life.
Use kitty litter or other absorbents to soak up spills. Never wash spills away with a garden hose. Pour kitty litter on oil leaks and other household chemical spills to soak them up.
Around the yard:
Use less lawn chemicals and always follow the label directions. Rains can wash away your fertilizers and pesticides, which is a big waste for you and toxic for fish.
Clear street gutters and storm drains of trash, leaves and grass. Trash may clog in the drains and cause your street to flood in a storm. Leaves and grass wash to our streams and rivers where they decay, reducing the oxygen in the water that fish need to survive. Trash and debris can also cause numerous problems for fish and other aquatic animals.
Compost leaves, branches and grass clippings. Compost makes great mulch for your garden or flowerbed. Leave grass clippings on the lawn as you mow to return nutrients to your lawn.
Pick up trash and litter in your yard. Much of the trash in our yards and along roadways will eventually find its way to a stream or river. This not only causes a nuisance, but fish and some birds can become trapped in some types of trash and die.
For more information on what you can do to help, please view the documents below.
Thank you for helping the City protect our waterways.