Take action today to protect and improve Wayne’s water quality!
Like Lake Hopatcong, waterways across the US are dealing with pollution problems. Here in NJ, changing climate patterns are also affecting our ground and surface water.
2018 was the wettest on record for the Garden State. Our average precipitation is about 46 inches— last year, we got about 64 inches. The volume of rain per storm is also increasing, which can trigger flooding— my town has experienced two flooding events in the last year. Storm water runoff and pollution problems are also increasing here.
The phosphorus and nitrogen in fertilizers not only enhance plant growth on land— they can do the same for aquatic plants when they are carried into them by fast-moving rainwater. This not only harms aquatic ecosystems and affects water quality; it can also lead to algae blooms and other pollution problems.
There are things we all can do to avoid waterway contamination. Do not apply fertilizer before or after storms, or on water-soaked ground; read the label on your fertilizer bottle to ensure you’re following application directions. If your property is next to a body of water, follow NJ law and do not apply fertilizers within 25 feet of that waterway if applying by hand, or within 10 feet if using a drop spreader, rotary spreader, or targeted spray liquid fertilizer.
Read labels and be judicious if applying herbicides and pesticides; their toxic chemicals can pollute our groundwater, as well as surface waterways. If you use a lawn care or landscaping service, check to ensure they are NJ certified, and therefore trained to follow NJ requirements and laws on the use of lawn and garden products.
By educating ourselves and taking action now, we can protect and improve NJ’s water quality, and avoid future pollution problems.
By Dianne Douthat, candidate for Wayne Ward 2 Township Councilor