The State of Stormwater

It’s a new year, which seems like the perfect time to take stock of LA Stormwater. What’s going well? What needs a little extra oomph? And where can each one of us make a positive difference in the health of our local creeks, rivers and ocean? Let’s take a look…

Water Conservation

We’ve had a few good soakings in the last few weeks, but California is still very much in a drought. There are many simple ways to save, from fixing leaks to turning off the water while brushing your teeth. Vow to conserve more precious H20 in 2015 with our new Water Conservation Pledge. As a thank you, we’ll send you a cotton tote bag for free! 

Pet waste

We love dogs at LA Stormwater. Part of being a dog lover (and a good neighbor) is picking up after our pooches. That’s because when pet waste washes into storm drains, it pollutes our local waters with bacteria that can harm the health of humans, pets and marine life. To make it easier for you to pick up, we handed out 1,500 free canisters of dog waste bags last year and we’re hoping to break that record in 2015. Look for our tip cards in your local pet stores, beginning February 2015. Or you can always fill out our request form at LAStormwater.org

Pesticides

More and more Angelenos are ripping up their thirsty grass lawns and putting drought-tolerant, grass-free gardens in their place. It’s a great way to lower your water bill and it helps keep fertilizers and pesticides out of our waters. (Getting a rebate of $3.75 per square foot doesn’t hurt either!) Even small amounts of insecticides and herbicides can pollute our waterways and disrupt delicate aquatic life. If you’re not ready to go grassless, always use the least amount of fertilizer and pesticides possible and never apply them when rain is forecast.

Litter

According to recent research, there are 5 trillion pieces of plastic floating in the world’s oceans. A fair amount of that trash starts out as litter on our streets and sidewalks. But thanks to LA’s catch basins and their Proposition O-funded trash screens, 1.67 million gallons of trash were kept out of the Pacific Ocean. That’s enough trash to fill 129,000 kitchen trash bags!

Cleaning up

We’re making progress preventing stormwater pollution, but we need your help to clean up our communities and prevent trash and pollutants from entering our rivers and ocean. Join your neighbors at a local cleanup event. Heal the Bay has monthly cleanups on the third Saturday of every month, from 10am to noon. Every April, Friends of the Los Angeles River hosts a series of LA River cleanups called La Gran Limpieza. And this year’s California Coastal Cleanup Day is slated for September 19, 2015.

As for us? We’ll be at many community events throughout Los Angeles this year. Check out our Facebook page to find out what’s going on. Already on our calendar is a date with 4,000 LA schoolchildren at the 22nd annual Kids Ocean Day

 

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    Aerial Art at Kids Ocean Day 2010