How to Conserve Water and Protect Local Waterways This Summer

Storm drain - 2

This summer, you can conserve water and help protect the local waterways by following these tips from the Lower Grand River Organization of Watersheds and Environmental Protection Agency.


  • Check plumbing fixtures and irrigation systems annually to identify and repair leaks.
  • Turn off the tap while shaving or brushing teeth.
  • Plug up the sink or use a wash basin when washing dishes by hand.
  • Thaw frozen food in the refrigerator overnight rather than use a running tap of hot water.
  • Add food wastes to your compost pile rather than use the garbage disposal.
  • Use the appropriate water level or load size selection on your washing machine and set the water temperature to cold rather than hot or warm.

  • Follow instructions on fertilizers and herbicides packages. Too much can pollute local waterways and cause harmful algae blooms.
  • Replace grass around pools with something more environmentally friendly, such as clover or moss. More than 1 inch of water will not be absorbed and will run off the grass.
  • Identify and bring your household hazardous waste to local disposal events.
  • Pick up animal waste to keep it from getting washed into storm drains and impacting water quality.
  • Wash vehicles on the grass, if possible, or take it to a commercial car wash where the water is connected to sanitary sewers and treated.
  • Avoid overwatering lawns to prevent fertilizers and herbicides from entering storm drains.

For more information, visit the LGROW and EPA websites.