Keep It Clean

Water is a vital natural resource. Our quality of life and health is greatly dependent upon the quality of our water. Fish and other wildlife also rely on the responsible stewardship of our natural resources. Activities in our homes, yards and communities have an effect on the quality of our water supplies. By learning about this connection, we can protect our waterways through prevention of non-point source pollution caused when storm water picks up contaminants as it flows through a watershed.

What You Can Do To Prevent Water Pollution - Simple steps are featured below including: proper disposal of household hazardous waste, yard waste (including pet waste), and cooking grease; making simple lawn care choices; reducing stormwater runoff; maintaining cars & driveways properly; & don't litter, volunteer for clean-ups & other events.

National Take Back Day Occurs Annually in April & October
National Take Back day events occur annually in April (4/22/23) and October (date TBD). Fortunately, Franklin County host's several permanent drug drop-off locations too; visit Pharmaceutical Disposal for year-round sites.

Make Simple Lawn Care Choices
Choose native plants, spot treat problem areas, or better yet, consider less toxic alternatives such as beneficial insects. Use the mulching feature on your lawn mower instead of bagging the clippings, or better yet, create your own compost from your yard waste. Learn more about proper yard waste disposal.

Dispose of Yard Waste Properly, Including Pet Waste
Waste must be properly prepared and placed for collection. Leaves swept into the curb will not be collected in Columbus. Dumping yard waste into storm drains or waterways adds excess nutrients to the water, can clog drains & contribute to flooding. Better yet, compost & mulch yard waste.

Make Smart Choices Maintaining Cars & Driveways
Simple steps can prevent many common pollutants from washing off your driveway into the curb and down storm drains that lead (untreated) into rivers. Consider porous pavement options when possible.

Reduce Stormwater Runoff
Pave less and landscape more, or pave with pervious surfaces. Use a rain barrel to collect rainwater; plant a rain garden, trees & shrubs. Use soaker hoses or drip irrigation and don't over-water. Aim sprinklers away from paved surfaces - they don't need watered.

Visit the PUP Program
Take the PUP Pledge - get a free pooch prize. Cleaning up after your dog is a simple, everyday thing you can do to help keep waterways free of harmful bacteria. Clean Water is the Goal.

Dispose of Household Hazardous Waste Properly
Household hazardous wastes are materials used in the home that can cause injury or are harmful if disposed of improperly. Never dump these items into a storm drain, open waterway or ditch. Learn how to dispose of such items properly - there are many free drop-off locations.

Simple Steps for DIY and Home Contractors
Contractors and those who do home improvement projects can be fined thousands of dollars if they allow paint, drywall compound, concrete washout or other chemicals to go down a storm drain. Follow these guidelines to learn how to properly dispose of leftover materials and wastewater and gain ideas for recycling and reuse.

Do Not Pour Kitchen Grease Down the Drain
Do not pour cooking oils & grease down the drain after preparing meals. Fats, oils & grease (FOG) can clog sewers, resulting in basement backups and costly repairs.

Don't Litter, Volunteer for Clean-Ups & Other Events
Trash left along roadways, ditches and stream banks washes into our waterways through rain and melting snow. Not only is littering illegal, it is an eyesore, can endanger wildlife, provide breeding grounds for mosquitoes, can block storm drains and cause flooding.

Join GreenSpot
Looking for more ways to save money and go green for the environment? GreenSpot has over 40 different ideas of how to green up your home. Visit GreenSpot.

Managing Our Sewer System
Various initiatives are underway to protect and improve water quality in the Columbus metropolitan area. We all benefit from clean water.