Our St. Clair River watershed is made up of unique water resources, like over a thousand miles of streams and creeks, fourteen Great Lakes beaches and North America’s largest freshwater delta. Threats to our watershed, like runoff, flooding and pollution can lead to advisories for fish and drinking water consumption, closed beaches, and impair our favorite recreational activities. While it may be easy to remember these things when we are paddling in the spring or relaxing on the beach in July, it’s important that we do our part to protect the watershed year-round.
Our first reaction to a blanket of ice and snow may be to remove it as quickly and easily as possible. The products and steps you choose to clear your driveway and sidewalk can either have a positive or negative impact on rivers and streams, creeks and drains as the snow melts. Consider these winter watershed friendly tips:
If you are like me and enjoy winter recreation, like hiking and skiing, we can still keep watershed projection in mind while outside enjoying nature. Remember, when we play in it today, we drink it tomorrow!
Many of our winter activities and household chores can add stress to our watersheds but when we each make small changes, we ensure our lake, streams and rivers remain clean and healthy for swimming, drinking and fishing in all seasons.
What is your favorite winter outdoor activity and how does it have the potential to impact our watershed, either in a positive or negative way? Have you thought about how your snow removal habits impact your spring landscaping? What is your favorite snow and ice removal product or technique that is watershed friendly? Let us know in the comments!
Amy lives on the Black River in Port Huron and enjoys watching people recreate on the river in the winter from the warmth of her living room.