Almost half of the lakes in the United States are polluted to the point that they are considered unsafe for swimming, fishing and supporting marine life. Keeping the lakes clean is a great way to help the planet. Use these tips to help clean up local lakes around the country.
Use Less Salt in the Winter
While salting sidewalks and roadways helps melt snow that can cause icy accidents to occur, it is also becoming a big problem in lakes. The chloride from the salt eventually makes its way to lakes and rivers. This chloride builds up in lakes and aquifers, killing marine ecosystems. Use only as much salt as necessary to melt the ice and let local officials know that you support efforts to reduce salt usage on highways and roadways.
Use Natural Pesticides and Herbicides
Pesticides and herbicides used to keep bugs and weeds out of gardens leech into the ground and make its way into the water that goes into the lakes. Pesticides and herbicides are high in phosphorous and nitrogen that pollute lakes and kill wildlife. Natural pesticides and herbicides can help reduce dangerous levels in the water. Biological nutrient removal also aids in the reduction of phosphorus and nitrogen in lake water.
Switch to Non-toxic Tackle
Those who enjoy fishing may want to look at their tackle. Toxic tackle, such as lead jigs and sinkers, leach lead into the water. Additionally, waterfowl such as trumpeter swans and loons pick at the tackle that is left on the sides of the lake or in the water. These animals may contract lead poisoning and die, which disrupts the entire ecosystem of the lake.
Pack it In, Pack it Out
There is nothing that makes summer memories like spending a warm day on the boat out on the lake. Keep water clean by making sure nothing is left around the lake or dumped into the lake after a day of fun. Trash, leftover food and supplies that are brought to the lake need to be disposed of properly at home. These items pollute the lake and harm fish and wildlife that live around the water.
Keeping the lakes clean is the responsibility of everyone. Lakes are the biggest reservoirs of water in the country. Making the lakes clean keeps the water that everyone drinks free from pollutants and dangerous chemicals. Clean water means a healthier, happier life for everyone.