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Green lawn and stormwater

The way people care for their lawns has a big impact on the water quality of the nearby lakes, rivers, and streams. When it rains, stormwater runoff makes its way into local waterways, carrying with it excess fertilizer, yard waste, pollutants and trash. That can lead to harmful algal blooms, high bacteria levels and degraded aquatic habits.

As part of its stormwater management program, the UMass Chan Environmental Health & Safety team encourages everyone to considering these steps to help prevent stormwater pollution.

  • Clean up trash, leaves and other pollutants from sidewalks and driveways so they don’t wash away with the next rain.
  • When mowing, leave the clippings to decompose or compost them.
  • Use fertilizers sparingly. Don’t over-fertilize your lawn.
  • Avoid overwatering your lawn. Water in the morning and grass will retain moisture better.
  • Do not leave grass clippings, leaves or yard waste on the sidewalk. Never blow leaves into the street or dump into a storm drain.

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