By Nicole Czorny
Better water. Better jobs. This year’s theme for World Water Day is jobs and water, making the connection between healthy watersheds and healthy, thriving communities.
Playing a vital role in the health of our cities, watersheds perform many functions, from providing clean and accessible drinking water and locally grown food, to absorbing greenhouse gas emissions for cleaner air to breathe.
In urban areas, a mix of pollutants such as pesticides and cigarette butts, and hard, impermeable surfaces that prevent water from flowing into the ground take a heavy toll on the health of our watersheds.
This affects local wildlife, plants and access to clean drinkable, swimmable and fishable waters for all. But there are simple actions you can do to change the tide!
Take the plunge to protect the health of your watershed with these easy water-wise tips:
- Commit to a toxic and chemical free home and yard by choosing products that are safer for you and your watershed, like biodegradable dish soap
- Think natural and plant native species, they require less maintenance, absorb more water than grassy lawns, and help attract pollinators
- Install a rain barrel to help maintain stormwater on your property—you can even use the collected (free!) water for your garden
- If you live in a condo or apartment, collect rain water by leaving your watering can outside when it rains and use the rain water for all your plants
Live in the Toronto area and not sure what watershed you live in? Check out the TRCA’s watershed map to find out and get exploring!