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What you can do to improve water quality in a dry season

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As the rainy season comes to a late close for spring 2009, it is time to consider ways Rocklin residents and businesses can improve water quality in the local creeks and streams during the upcoming dry season. Water, debris and chemicals that go down the gutter and into the street and parking lot drains do not go to a wastewater treatment plant—it all flows directly into the creeks and streams. Rocklin’s waterways are salmon and trout habitat and are part of the Dry Creek and Pleasant Grove watersheds. Ways to conserve water • Use automatic irrigation systems to water landscaping for shorter periods only as often as necessary. • Only water landscaping in the early morning or after dark to reduce evaporation. • Be sure not to over water — over watering can send additional sediment and chemicals into the storm drain system that contaminate the creeks and streams. • For more information visit Placer County Water Agency’s Water Use Efficiency Web site at pcwa.net/level3/efficiency.html. • Plant native and drought-tolerant plants. For information about these plants and where to buy them visit The Garden Spot at bewaterwise.com. For an online California native plant landscape design tool visit mynativeplants.com-/site. Use landscaping chemicals carefully: • Apply lawn care and other landscape chemicals per package instructions. • Do not over water after using chemicals —more of the chemicals are washed into the storm drain system and creeks. • Choose alternatives to control pests such as lady bugs and non-toxic chemicals. • For more information visit the Our Water Our World Web site at ourwaterourworld.org. Properly dispose of pet waste: • Pick up after your pet every time—bacteria in pet waste can make people sick and pollute our creeks and streams. • Throw pet waste in a garbage can or flush it down a toilet—never wash it into landscaping or the gutter. Properly dispose of household waste: • Always throw garbage in a designated receptacle. •Recycle whenever possible. • Sweep driveways and sidewalks instead of hosing them off. Put leaves and grass clippings in the garbage or compost. • Never rinse yard-care equipment or flush debris into the gutter. • Never flush paint, household chemicals, solvents, and similar hazardous household waste into the gutter. • Dispose of hazardous household waste by taking it to a city-sponsored universal waste event. For more information visit the city’s recycling Web site at rocklin.ca.us/residents/new_to_the_city/recycling.asp. • Take it to the Materials Recovery Facility run by the Western Placer Waste Management Authority, for more information visit the WPMPA Web site at wpwma.com. Recycle: • In Rocklin, you can throw recyclables directly in the garbage—no need to sort or separate—they are diverted out of the landfill at the MRF. For more information see the city’s Recyclin’ Rocklin Style brochure at rocklin.ca.us/civica/filebank/blobdload.asp?BlobID9742. • Used household batteries can not go in the garbage. Bring them to a local collection site and look for the green collection tubes. For a list of collection sites visit the city’s recycling Web site at rocklin.ca.us/residents/new_to_the_city/recycling.asp. ~ Staff Report