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May 20

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“I Brake for Clean Water”

DYK that normal vehicle wear and tear harms water resources? Listen up to learn how cars are a driving force behind polluted water—and how you can help:


It’s true that a good hard rainstorm makes everything look shiny and clean.

All roads lead to...water, when rain runs off into ditches like this. (via CBDM)

All roads lead to…water, when rain runs off into ditches like this. (via CBDM)

But, unfortunately, equally true is that this same rainfall washes chemicals and debris off roads and driveways, into drains and ditches—and ultimately into our water supply.

Shawn McElmurry of Wayne State University says people don’t always think about how normal vehicle wear and tear contributes to that mix.

“When we drive our cars, we have brakes that slowly over time wear away, and that dust gets washed down the storm drains,” McElmurry explains.

“That contains a lot of metals—cadmium, zinc—that we know can be toxic to aquatic life and have detrimental effects on the environment.”

The good news is, regular vehicle maintenance will keep us all driving down the road to cleaner water.

Hear More:

Listen to Shawn McElmurry talk about water treatment plants, and where storm and sewage water meet.

Get schooled:

INT0008 Shawn McElmurry headshot

Associate professor Shawn McElmurry schools us on water-friendly car maintenance. (via WSU)

The fine print:

 

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.currentcast.org/stormwater-management/i-brake-for-clean-water/