Frankfort, KY— (Sept. 20, 2021)– The Kentucky Division of Water (DOW) will be joining the American Water Works Association (AWWA) and water utilities across the nation in celebrating Source Water Protection Week, September 26 through October 2.
Throughout the week, partners for water health will be raising awareness about the importance of protecting drinking water sources. The AWWA has provided a wide range of materials you and your organization can use to help promote the importance of protecting source water. Watch for social media posts highlighting state specific tools that can be used to protect water resources.
Ways To Participate in Source Water Protection Week:
- Share what you, your organization or school is doing to promote healthy source water using #ProtectTheSource.
- Share educational materials about source water protection. Examples could include training courses, webinars, workshops, and K-12 school programs. https://www.awwa.org/Events-Education/eLearning-Courses/Virtual-Learning
- Hold a poster, photo, or essay contest for kids to show what source water protection means to them.
- Host a live or virtual watershed tour to help people connect land use activities to the quantity and quality of water for drinking water supplies.
- Connect with local watershed and conservation organizations to discuss ways to collaborate on source water protection efforts. https://sites.google.com/site/watershedwatch/ https://kyconservation.com/
- Host and/or participate in community volunteer activities that protect the environment such as watershed cleanups, stenciling stormwater drains, and planting trees or riparian buffers. https://www.awwa.org/Membership-Volunteering/Volunteer
Ways To Protect Source Water Every Day:
- Manage household hazardous waste properly (cleaners, paints, vehicle fluids, fertilizers, pesticides, etc.) – Only purchase what you need. Donate unused portions to friends or community organizations. Recycle leftovers when possible. To find recycling/disposal locations visit http://www.earth911.com or call 1-800-CLEANUP.
- Avoid dumping – Never put anything down the sink, toilet or storm drain as it can end up in drinking water sources. Dispose of cleaners, medicines, oil/grease, etc. properly.
- Clean up – Pick up after yourself and your pets. Use trash receptacles and recycle whenever possible. Pet waste can enter storm drains and spread bacteria.
- Use alternative products – Avoid using products that may contain harmful materials such as perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS); use cast iron or stainless-steel pots and pans instead of non-stick pots and pans.
- Find your source – Identify your source of water and check where you live and work relative to source water areas. An example tool that can be used to find this information in the U.S. is DWMAPS.
- Conserve water – Use water efficiently to ease the burden on water sources and save money. Repair leaks, use a rain barrel, install low flow devices to toilets and showers, wash full loads of laundry and dishes, etc. For more steps to save water visit https://www.epa.gov/watersense.
- Limit use of fertilizers and pesticides – Reduce the amount of materials used on your lawn or consider natural alternatives.
- Service your septic system – Have a professional inspect your septic system every 3 years and have it pumped every 3-5 years.
- Participate in volunteer activities – Attend events such as removing invasive plants and replanting natives, stormwater drain stenciling, rain barrel workshops, litter cleanups, etc. Watershed groups are often familiar with upcoming local events.
- If you see something, say something – Report any spills, illegal dumping, or suspicious activity to authorities.
More information about Source Water Protection is available on AWWA’s resource page and at the Source Water Collaborative Learning Exchange. Also, be sure to follow the Hashtags #SourceWaterProtectionWeek and #ProtectTheSource.