Tuesday, March 29, 2011

March Meeting Updates

We were joined at this month's meeting by Amy Roskilly of the Cuyahoga Soil and Water Conversation District and Suzanne Krippel and Jill Lis from the Cuyahoga County Board of Health to review a grant that they have received from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative to conduct a study of the Huntington Beach water shed. The goal of the study is to improve the water quality at Huntington Beach by reducing pathogen inputs (e-coli) from the surrounding water shed (Porter Creek). The contamination sources will be identified, and an action plan to address them (possibly with future grants) will be developed. The study covers 2 years and will look at e-coli levels in the water. In the first year, the storm sewer fall outs that contribute the most contamination will be identified and samples will be taken, particularly when it rains. The University of Toledo will be doing an in-depth study of the samples. In the second year, the surface water where there are a lot of impervious surfaces will be sampled. The results of the study will be published under the Great Lakes Accountability Systems (GLAS).

Amy and Suzanne are also involved in the education of residents around storm water management. There are simple steps that individuals can take to reduce storm water run off, including rain barrels (make one at our upcoming workshop), rain gardens, reduce impervious surfaces on driveways, wash your car on the lawn, plant trees, etc.

After the presentation, the Green Team discussed the fact that there is a volume problem with storm water, even without the contamination. Case in point—the significant flooding that occurred on Porter Creek in February and early March. The development that replaces trees and soil with impervious surfaces (concrete) is a large contributor to the volume problems with the water shed.

Cornelia Ryan provided information on the native plants of the year, from the Lake Erie Allegheny Partnership for Biodiversity. Invasive species pose some of the greatest threats to the biodiversity of our region. By planting native plants, you will see many benefits, including: Attract native wildlife, reduce erosion, less fertilizer and watering, and connect people to nature. The native plants featured for 2011 are: Blazing Star (Liatris spicata), Allegheny Serviceberry (Amelanchier laevis), and Common Winterberry (Ilex verticillata)

Mark your calendar for these BVGT Upcoming Events:

Wednesday, April 13---7-8:30 PMCompost Seminar—Bay Community House

Saturday, April 16---9 AM-5 PMHabitat for Humanity Drop Off—Police Station

Wednesday, April 27---7-8:30 PMRain Barrel Workshop—Bay Community House

Saturday, May 21---9 AM-5 PMHabitat for Humanity Drop Off—Police Station

Saturday, May 21---10:30 AM-2 PMAnnual Waterway Cleanup

For a complete set of Minutes from the March 8th meeting email us at bayvillagegreenteam@gmail.com. Join us at our next regular GT meeting on Tuesday, April 12th, 6:30 PM, at the Bay Community House.

Make a difference, get involved!

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