Resolve To Give Back to Our Bays

2013 is here and with a new year comes new beginnings and lots of resolutions. Why not make a few to keep Los Angeles cleaner? In that spirit, below are a few ways that you can resolve to give back to our bays. Consider adopting one (or all!) of these simple resolutions in 2013 and remember that by doing the right thing, you can have a positive impact on both Santa Monica and San Pedro Bays – Los Angeles’ local bays.

1. Sack the Plastic Bag

The holidays and all that shopping may be over, but you can still make the daily decision to bring your own reusable bags to the market and the mall. Plastic bags create loads of unnecessary litter. Every year, Californians use more than 16 billion plastic bags! They are easily blown by the wind, and they often end up in the ocean, creating health hazards for marine life. Make 2013 the year that you keep reusable bags in your car and use them every time when you go shopping.

2. Keep Your Litter Out of Our Gutters

Keep pet waste, yard trimmings and trash off the street and out of the storm drains so they don’t end up in our bays. January and February are LA’s wettest months so this is particularly timely right now. If you notice clogged catch basins in your neighborhood, please give the LA Storm Drain Hotline a call at (800) 974-9794 so that we can send an LA Sanitation crew out to clean it out.

3. Make A Clean Sweep

Use a broom, not a hose, to clean sidewalks and driveways. Sweep trash into a dustpan, not the gutter and use garden clippings as mulch to fertilize and retain moisture in your yard.

4. Recycle Your Used Motor Oil

You can recycle your used motor oil and other automotive fluids at LA City-sponsored SAFE Centers located throughout Los Angeles.  Most gas stations, auto parts stores and garages will also accept used motor oil for recycling. Never pour it down a storm drain, in the gutter or bury it in your yard. Motor oil is extremely toxic and just one drop can contaminate hundreds of gallons of water.

5. Don’t Be A Drip

Turn off your sink’s faucet when you don’t need it, fix leaky pipes and install low-flow shower heads and toilets. Overwatering lawns is especially wasteful (especially during the rainy season) and sends trash and toxins to the ocean through our local rivers, creeks and lakes.

Photos courtesy of bitzcelt and Michael Francis McCarthy.

Thank you to Heal the Bay for use of copy from their “Ten Ways to Heal the Bay.”

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