No matter where you live, everyone should take action to protect groundwater. Groundwater is usually difficult and expensive to clean up, and as a source of drinking water, is important to conserve and protect before problems arise.
As Groundwater Awareness Week 2019 comes to a close, we leave you with some concrete ways to protect groundwater in your home.
Switch to Natural Household Products
Many household products such as cleaners, synthetic fibers, or body washes with microbeads enter our water system every day. Make the switch to natural alternatives (think lemon juice, vinegar) that are environmentally friendly and inexpensive.
Before You Toss…
Think about recycling products such as motor oil, paint, or electronics and disposing of waste such as paint properly. In Indianapolis, Recycle Force or the city’s monthly toxic waste drop are good options. The Marion County Wellfield Education Corporation has compiled a list of recycling/tox drop options.
Old or unused medicines that are tossed or flushed down the toilet also can enter and affect our water supply. Check local pharmacies or community drop off events to dispose of medicine properly and anonymously.
Not only does disposing of waste properly protect the water, the trash is also kept out of landfills, preventing chemical seepage and the emission of greenhouse gases which contribute to global warming.
Conserve Water Indoors
Likely you’ve run into consumer education on this topic already – take short showers, shut water off while brushing teeth or shaving, run full loads of dishes and laundry.
Don’t forget to also check for leaky faucets, toilets, and other fixtures/appliances and install water conserving models when possible.
Take Care of Your Outdoor Living
Planting flowers and grass varieties native to your region not only cuts back on the need for fertilizer, but decreases the amount of water needed. Create a rain garden to remove up to 90% of chemicals from rainwater runoff.
Take care when you fill up your gas tank, whether at the pump or filling up your lawn mower or other outdoor equipment.
If you do have a spill of a chemical or oil, contact the appropriate authorities to help clean it up. (List for Indianapolis)
Maintain Your Septic Tank and Water Well
Not only is keeping your septic tank secure important, but if you have a water well on your properly this needs care and maintenance also. There are 3 easy to remember steps well owners can take each year (or when you suspect a problem). If you are unsure how to achieve this, it may be best to contact a professional for help.
- Test for bacteria, nitrate and other contaminants.
- Tend to your well by keeping up with annual inspections.
- Treat your well when necessary.
If you need more information on caring for your well, visit WellOwner.org.