On Thursday, June 13, 2019, from 5:30-7:30 p.m., the Pepperell Branch Watershed Management Partnership will be installing storm drain markers around town. Volunteers from the community are welcome to join the event. Participants will meet first for instructions and supplies at Frog Pocket Park (located on the corner of S. Railroad Ave. and S. 9th Street across from the Irish Bread Pub).
Participants will then split into teams to install the markers at multiple locations around town. To join, sign up at: http://bit.ly/PeppStormDrain
Many people think that water that enters into a storm drain is treated by the local wastewater treatment plant. How-ever, these conveyances typically empty into the
varying streams that surround our town. Streams where our children play, people fish, and our ecosystems work to thrive. Improper disposal of pollutants such as antifreeze, pesticides, paints, oils, and other pollutants can cause serious damage to the water quality and the environment where we live.
“By installing these storm drain markers, we hope to educate and inform citizens about reducing water pollution in Opelika,” said Nikki Dictson of the Alabama Cooperative Extension System and lead for the Pepperell Branch Watershed Management Plan. “When pollutants are put into a storm drain, it contaminates our streams, creeks and rivers. It’s important for us to protect Alabama’s water resources.”
This is part of the larger Pepperell Branch Water-shed Management Plan to reduce pollutants specific to Pepperell Branch Watershed. The storm drain markers will be permanantly applied to concrete or asphalt throughout the watershed. There are several steps citizens can take to reduce waste in storm drains:
• Take used oil to a recycle center or a fast Oil-Change business
• Wash your car on the grass
• Return old paint to the store where you purchased it
• Secure your paper trash when placed on the street
• Take all old chemicals to the Opelika Recycle Center
• Do not pour fats, oils, and grease into your sink or sewer
• Do not over fertilize your lawn
• Pick up pet waste
• Throw cigarette butts in trash
For more information, visit www.opelika-al.gov (Storm Water Management). Citizens can report an issue on the website as well. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact John Harris, City of Opelika Storm Water Coordinator at 334-705-5450 or Nikki Dictson with Alabama Cooperative Extension System at 979-575-4424.
This project is funded by the Alabama Department of Environmental Management through a Clean Water Act Section 319(h) nonpoint source grant by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 4.