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Current Theme: Watershed
Protecting Water Quality in Streams and Rivers


What Can You Do to Protect Water Quality of Streams and Rivers?

(affected parameters given in parentheses)

Pick up pet waste (fecal coliform, nitrate, phosphate, DO)

Dispose of chemicals (such as motor oil, gasoline, antifreeze, solvents, paints, pesticides) properly. Don't pour chemicals down the drain, onto the ground, or into the storm sewer- they end up in the creek (See Boulder Countyís Household Hazardous Waste website for information on disposing of these chemicals) (SC, TDS, organic chemicals)

Take your car to a professional car wash instead of washing it in the driveway. Car washes treat waste water. If you do wash at home, prevent soap runoff from reaching the storm sewer, use waterless soap, or avoid soap that contains chlorine, chlorine bleach, phosphates, nitrates, or ammonia (TDS, nitrate, phosphates, SC, ammonia, DO)

Use minimal amount of fertilizer on lawns and gardens. Avoid using when a rain shower is expected (nitrate, phosphate, TSS, TDS, DO)

Use alternative pest management techniques instead of pesticides. (See the City of Boulderís Office of Environmental Affairs website for more information. Avoid using pesticides when a rain shower is expected (pesticides, TDS, TSS)

Clean driveways and sidewalks by sweeping instead of using a hose and water. Donít wash lawn clippings or leaves down the storm drain (DO, TOC)

Water the lawn when itís dry rather than on a calendar schedule. Donít water the pavement. Minimize paved surfaces when landscaping (TDS, TSS, temperature, nitrate, phosphate, pesticides)

Limit driving and other fossil fuel use; keep your car maintained; use mass transit (See the City of Boulderís Office of Environmental Affairs website for more information (SS, TDS, nitrate, phosphate, pH, SC, DO, organic chemicals)

Use alternatives to household cleaners and avoid putting hazardous chemicals down the drain. (For more information, see BASIN's Household hazards and alternatives webpage (TDS, ammonia, phosphate, DO)

Donít remove trees and bushes from along streams (temperature, TSS, TDS, phosphate, nitrate, SC, turbidity, DO)

Maintain septic systems properly (fecal coliform, nitrates, phosphates, ammonia, DO)


Use good animal keeping practices at cattle feedlots, hog farms, dairies, and barnyards to avoid animal waste reaching surface water (nitrates, phosphates, fecal coliform, DO)

Prevent sediment from washing off a construction site (TSS, fecal coliform, turbidity, DO)


Help prevent forest fires (TSS, TDS, nitrate, phosphate)


INVITATION BASIN is a community project actively seeking public participation. We appreciate all feedback and welcome comments, suggestions and contributions. To find out more about how you can be involved, click here. Help BASIN serve your needs, take our "10 questions in 10 seconds" survey.

BASIN is supported by the US EPA, the City of Boulder, the Keep it Clean Partnership, BCWI and BCN

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Last Page Update - Tuesday December 27, 2005^ M