City Offers Tips to Minimize Stormwater Pollutants
Now that it’s time to tackle fall lawn care and prepare for winter de-icing, the City of Evanston’s Public Works Agency asks residents to minimize the discharge of pollutants from their private property that can be picked up by stormwater and pollute Lake Michigan and the North Shore Channel.
Stormwater, according to the Environment Protection Agency, is “water from rain or melting snow.” As water travels over land or through the ground, it dissolves substances resulting from human activity.
Five pollutants to minimize are:
- Fuels and oils
- Soaps/detergents used for washing vehicles and property
- Pesticides, herbicides and fertilizer
- Winter de-icing materials
To reduce pollution, oil leaks should be fixed immediately; cars should be washed on an area that absorbs water using biodegradable, phosphate-free, water-based cleaners; leftover paint should be recycled correctly; and native plants, shrubs and trees should be planted to reduce the amount of fertilizer needed. This winter, residents and business owners should consider using sand or less salt when de-icing sidewalks and driveways.
A complete list of tips to safeguard our source water and environment are posted at cityofevanston.org/stormwater-runoff. For more information, please call/text 847-448-4311. For convenience, you may dial 3-1-1 while in Evanston.