Water Wise

When it rains, Los Angeles sends billions of gallons of 'free liquid gold' down the drain

During one of this winter’s frequent storms, sheets of rainwater spilled from roofs, washed across sidewalks and down gutters into a sprawling network of underground storm drains that empty into the Los Angeles River channel. (Same goes for Ballona Flood Control Channel. Billions of gallons of rainwater
flow into the Pacific Ocean at Santa Monica Bay.)

You can reduce your water bill by capturing "free" rainwater.
 
Private homes cover 60% of our developed LA land mass. 

89% of our water comes from hundreds of miles away. 
Do your part. Capture "free" rainwater on site. 
Adapt simple methods described here. 
Plants and trees will thrive.
 
TREES TAKE CARE OF EACH, THEY SHARE WITH EACH OTHER, THEY STORE WATER IN THEIR ROOT SYSTEMS

SUMMER 2019 | KEEPERS OF THE WATERS

BIOSWALES: WHAT ARE THEY?

Thanks to these natural runoff filtration structures, we don't have to choose between great landscape aesthetics and eco-friendly design.

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Diagram by Julia Cauller

BIO-WHAT?

Bioswales are a unique green solution to the problem of contaminants in stormwater runoff. Bioswales slow down and collect polluted stormwater runoff and then filter it prior to returning it into the water cycle. They accomplish this filtration with the help of two natural processes: filtering water by passing it slowly through porous material, along with phytoremediation, where plants remove contaminants. Bioswales can contain sand, compost, and rock trenches along with native species of plants, which are adapted to local conditions. The inclusion of local plants is also important on an aesthetic and educational level: these plants blend in with the local environment and can serve as a tool to educate the public on issues of native biodiversity. Bioswales are a small but necessary remedy to the unmitigated proliferation of paved surfaces in our car- centric world. Parking lots especially create massive concrete plains incapable of absorbing or filtering stormwater.

To learn more about bioswales, check out the Soil Science Society of America: tiny.cc/soil-science-society

SWALE

/swāl/ • noun
a low or hollow place, especially a marshy depression between ridges.

WHAT DO BIOSWALES FILTER?

Silt
Organics
Pathogens
Harmful fertilizers
Metallic compounds such as mercury and lead

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Rain Water Capture and Reuse discussion by Jeanette Vosburg at the Culver City Garden Club  9.2.15. Capturing rainwater has saved 40% on the water bill from 2014 and 2015. Jeanette suggests choosing one or two of her ideas on your own property. 41 Minutes

Action Item For A Homeowner: If you own a home or unimproved land, consider capturing water on site. Exploring Rainwater Capture Options.pdf
Action Item For Activitist: 100+WAYS TO CONSERVE
 
VIDEOS
Implications of Ballona Wetlands Restoration - Travis Longcore

Water Wise Related Material

WATER & OIL VIDEO Farming, Fracking and Ground Water, Kern County, CA - by SpotlightCalifornia.com

Farmers and Kern County, California Commissioners' Meeting: Well Water Contamination California grows 2/3rds of the nations produce. Some farmers in the Central Valley farmers are buying recycled oil water from Chevron. Kiran visits the Central Valley's Cawelo Water District where the drought is causing farmers to use recycled oil water to irrigate their crops. She takes in the smells so you don't have to. This water is toxic. It can have 1 or more of 450 chemicals that oil companies use to bring oil to the surface. Hungry Now? Published on Feb 2, 2016.

Global Sustainability: Food Gardening at home is fun, tastes delicious and replaces water guzzling grass.

There are many reasons to plant a home garden. Nothing tastes more delicious than a hand picked tomato, orange, blackberry, basil, and the list can go on forever. Eaten at the peak of perfection, you truly appreciate the bounty of earth and the importance of water in the growth cycle.

Fracking and Water: Oilfield Fracking

Oilfield "fracking" is a new form of pollution that is the longest lasting damage to the land, worse than salting the ground to prevent plants and animals living on it, or a man growing food for his family, neighbors and you and me.  Fracking permanently poisons, yes poisons, the underground water, permanently poisons the air, yes the air, as natural gas and associated poisonous gases seep out of the water table to harm all life at ground level, your pets, crawling children, and you and me.  Fracking leads to water and air plumes of poisons stretching miles into all homes and bodies of wate

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