Source Water Protection Week

Sept. 25-Oct. 1, 2022

The Kentucky Division of Water invites water stakeholders to participate in this year’s  Source Water Protection Week. Begun in 2021 by the American Water Works Association (AWWA), Source Water Protection Week is an opportunity for water utilities, NGO’s, state and federal agencies, and anyone who has an interest in clean water (aka everyone!) to raise awareness about the value of the sources that supply our drinking water.

Throughout the week, partners for water health will be raising awareness about the importance of protecting drinking water sources. The Kentucky Division of Water’s Source Water Protection Week website (bit.ly/SWPWeek) will host a wide range of materials about the importance of source water and will be using social media to highlight state specific tools you can use to help protect water resources.

Ways To Participate in Source Water Protection Week:

  • Follow us @KentuckyEEC and/or visit the website and share the information about source water protection. Examples could include training courses, webinars, workshops, and K-12 school programs. 
  • Educators can hold a poster, photo, or essay contest for kids to show what source water protection means to them. 
  • Connect with your local watershed and conservation organizations to discuss ways you can collaborate on source water protection efforts. 
  • 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.
  • Find your source! Use the Source Water Protection Viewer to identify where your water comes from.
  • Join your local Watershed Watch in Kentucky group and learn how to monitor water quality in your watershed for free!

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 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.
  • 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.

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