News & Events for Chesapeake Bay

8 simple things to help restore the Chesapeake Bay watershed

Date Posted: 2021-02-22
Source: Herald-Mail

Contributing to the restoration of the Chesapeake Bay and its watershed might seem like a huge task, involving big projects — from stream restoration to updating wastewater treatment systems, to mitigating the damage caused by mine discharges, to changing farming practices.

But there are some simple things that people can do. They might seem like little things, but if enough people adopt the practices, environmentalists said they can have a large impact.

Have the worst lawn in the neighborhood

Use less fertilizer — or stop using it entirely. Certainly, everyone wants to have a nice, lush lawn, but commercial fertilizers contain nitrogen and phosphorus, major sources of pollution to the river watershed and the bay. The compounds run off into drains during rainstorms, and the chemicals flow downstream to the river and the bay.

Save rainwater

Build or buy a rain barrel and save that rain to water your lawn or garden. That way, stormwater has a better chance of being absorbed than running off. Or, build what’s known as a rain garden in your yard — lush native-plant gardens that absorb or filter rainwater.

Clean up after dogs

Dog feces contains a lot of the same nutrients that pollute the watershed, in addition to harmful bacteria and worms and other biohazards. As a benefit, you don’t have to worry about scraping it off your shoes after mowing the lawn.

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