RiverLink is partnering with the City of Asheville and community volunteers to help protect water quality through the new Adopt-A-Storm Drain program. “Storm drains are piped directly into streams and rivers, making this a simple way to prevent litter from entering our waterways,” says Renee Fortner, watershed resources manager at RiverLink.
This debris not only leads to street flooding, but it also harms fish and other aquatic wildlife when it makes its way into waterways, changing the stream habitat and making it difficult for fish to breed and find shelter from predators. “Litter is also a human health issue as it leaches toxic chemicals into the water as it breaks down, a process that can take many years,”
Grant funding from the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina’s Pigeon River Fund has made possible the pilot program, which will pair local volunteers with a storm drain in their neighborhood. Volunteers will be asked to check their storm drain regularly for at least a year and keep it clear. “The Adopt-A-Storm Drain program is an easy way to protect water quality and make a positive difference in the community,” says Fortner.
For more information on the Adopt-a-Storm Drain Program, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 828.252.8474, ext. 114.