Lake Erie: Don’t Waste It
Each year we have an outreach theme and 2017 focuses on waste that comes off the land and into our waterways. Everyone lives in a watershed, and in Cuyahoga County everyone lives in the Lake Erie watershed. Because of this watershed connection, our activities at home, at school, at work and throughout the community directly impact not only Lake Erie, but also our local waterways. This year we will focus on the reduction of stormwater pollution from pet waste, human waste (Home Sewage Treatment System/Illicit Discharge), Household Hazardous Waste, Yard Waste and Commercial Waste (e.g., restaurant grease).
Throughout the year we will focus on the following messages thru presentations, events, targeted mailings, posters, articles, etc.
- Waste from pets and nuisance wildlife pollutes Lake Erie and our local watershed. By properly disposing of pet waste and discouraging nuisance wildlife such as geese, residents can actively improve water quality.
- Underperforming Home Sewage Treatment Systems, especially off-lot discharging systems, pollute local streams and Lake Erie. Properly maintaining and/or upgrading these systems will improve water quality.
- Improperly connected and leaky household and community sewer pipes discharge waste water to the storm sewer system and storm water to the sanitary system, and contribute to overflows and the discharge of wastewater to rivers creeks and Lake Erie. Reducing runoff will reduce these discharges.
- Improperly disposing of household hazardous waste, restaurant waste and yard waste by dumping it down storm drains or into creeks introduces these pollutants to aquatic ecosystems in potentially toxic amounts.
- We all live in a watershed and our actions on the land directly affect the quality of our water.
We will also have involvement activities such as:
- Stream Cleanups
- Rain Barrel Workshops
- Watershed Friendly Landscaping: Rain Garden Installations and/or Sustainable Lawnscape Installations
- Tree Plantings
- Watershed-friendly lawn care and household cleaners workshop
Visit our Lake Erie: Don't Waste It webpage for more information as we add it thru the year.
Blog author: Amy Roskilly, Conservation Education Specialist