1. If you change your car’s oil, never dump the oil out onto the ground, bury it, or toss it into the trash. Collect it in a drum and have it recycled, or contact your local waste management authority to find out how to dispose of it in your area.
2. Wash your car with biodegradable, non-toxic cleaners and soaps which are available commercially. You can also use biodegradable, natural, liquid vegetable soap to wash your car.
3. Maintain your vehicle to make sure that no fluids are leaking.
4. Freon leaks are slow and often unnoticed by the homeowner until his or her air conditioning fails to kick on in the summer. Have your heating and cooling system regularly inspected to make sure that there is no Freon leaking into the ground. Rainwater will wash it right into the nearest stream.
5. Don’t throw out old cleaners, furniture polishes, or other chemicals by dumping them outside on the ground.
6. Use organic fertilizers on your lawn and garden, and refrain from applying toxic pesticides and herbicides. There are environmentally friendly ways to control pests that do not involve the use of poisons. Diatomaceous earth is one such option, as are biodegradable insecticidal soaps. White vinegar also kills most weeds if poured directly on them.
7. Dispose of your pet’s waste responsibly by scooping it and sealing it in zip-top bags. An even more eco-friendly option is to install a simple pet “septic system” which breaks down the waste into a harmless substance that is absorbed back into the soil.
8. Check with your local waste authorities about the disposal of empty (or partially empty) paint cans. Don’t just put them in the trash.
9. Recycle everything you can; whatever you put in the trash ends up in the landfill. And whatever is in the landfill gets rained on, and the storm run-off takes the chemicals and toxins with it into the streams.
10. If you have a septic tank or home aeration system, make sure it is operating properly. Have it regularly inspected by your local authorities and make any necessary repairs.
11. Don’t litter. Littering is illegal in many areas, but whether or not you are caught doesn’t change the fact that it is harmful to the environment. Cigarette butts count as litter, too – smokers often toss these little stubs aside without thinking about the millions of others who are also doing so. Litter gets washed into waterways and can cause major problems.
We hope that how to reduce water pollution in and around your home helps to reduce your contribution to water pollution and helps keep our water cleaner!