How Can I Help Protect Our Watershed?
Water that flows over land when it rains and enters our storm drains and local waterways (streams, creeks, ponds and Joe Pool Lake) is considered stormwater.
As water flows over land surfaces, it can pick up whatever is lying there: pesticides, fertilizers, debris, and exposed soils. That means these substances are moved directly into our storm drain system or local waterways (streams, creeks, ponds and Joe Pool Lake) causing many different problems. Pollution of our waterways can also mean we cannot boat, swim, or fish because it is unpleasant or even unsafe.
Stormwater pollution can be controlled if everyone plays a part in preventing these substances from entering the storm drain inlets in the streets where they live and work. You can help prevent stormwater pollution by eliminating illicit discharges; exercising responsible use of herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers in lawn and landscape maintenance; and proper disposal of used oil and toxic materials.
What You Can Do To Help
Watch NCTCOG’s Stormwater Pollution Prevention - Lawn Care and Stormwater Pollution Prevention explainer videos to learn tips to use at home.
More Ideas To Try
Report Illegal Dumping. If you have witnessed illegal dumping or know of a place in Mansfield where this has occurred, please call the Environmental Services Hotline at 817-728-3655.
Bag Your Pet’s Waste. Pet waste is not a fertilizer. Leaving pet waste on the ground can cause water pollution problems and is a health risk to pets and people. Pick up pet waste in your yard at least weekly and remember to take a disposable bag with you on walks. Bread bags, newspaper sleeves and produce bags are great for picking up waste.
Don’t apply fertilizer before it rains. Wasted fertilizer not only pollutes creeks, rivers and lakes, it is money “down the storm drain.” The same applies to applying pesticides and herbicides; rain won’t help to soak these chemicals into the ground, and they will only runoff down the stormdrain.
Washing Your Car. When you wash your car, use only water and biodegradable soap, and wash the car on the lawn or other unpaved surface. If possible use a professional car wash.
Changing Oil in Your Car. If you DIY oil changes at home, don’t dump in the street or stormdrain. Take the used oil to the Environmental Collection Center on the second Saturday of each month, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., and the Thursday and Friday before the second Saturday from 3 to 7 p.m.
Check for Oil Leaks. Don’t rinse spills or leaks into the street. Instead cleanup with cat litter or other absorbent materials.
Painting. Don’t dump unused paint down the stormdrain. Dispose of leftover paint and stains at the Environmental Collection Center on the second Saturday of each month, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., and the Thursday and Friday before the second Saturday from 3 to 7 p.m.
Getting Rid of Grass Clippings. Yard waste that enters the stormdrain eventually depletes oxygen in creeks, ponds and lakes. Leave your grass clippings on the yard after mowing to recycle nutrients back into the soil.
Draining Swimming Pools. Whenever possible, drain your pool onto the lawn or into the sanitary sewer. Pool chemicals can be harmful to the environment.
The Artists for the Earth contest offers a fun and creative way to raise awareness about the environment. This 3-part contest will feature Mansfield residents’ original writing, photography and videos centered around environmental themes. Finalists’ work will be shared here August 2020. For more information : https://bit.ly/3dsWSXa.