PROTECTING CLEAN WATER TOGETHER

This is a series of articles with a focus on how to protect our limited water resources.

Where are you in the Watershed?

February 2024

Whether aware of it or not, you have a place in this rich, natural landscape. Getting to know the names of creeks you see every day, where their waters rise and where they go, is a big first step in feeling connected to it all yourself. 

Water is a highly delicate resource

January 2024

Healthy creeks flow clean and clear. Soil erosion and land disturbance can harm creeks large and small and put water plants, fish and micro invertebrates at risk.

A Drop in the Bucket

December 2023

A clean car, clean creeks, pure drinking water — a drop in the bucket can be a very good thing.

Keeping Gunk Out

November 2023

Someone asked whether it was okay to drink from a creek. I debated for a minute, thinking how often I’d done just that. And then said, no, that’s not a great idea. You never know when there’s a dead deer in the creek upstream.

Where is “away”

October 2023

When we throw stuff “away” — by flushing expired or no-longer-needed drugs — it doesn’t magically vanish.

Talking Dirt

September 2023

It’s not natural, or normal, for rain to erode enough soil into a creek to make it run muddy. To trout, bugs, and aquatic plants, mud can be a deadly menace.

Trouble With Dams

August 2023

Floodwater erodes creek banks, injures aquatic habitats, spreads contaminants, and can foul both water and soil. “Green infrastructure” can help keep stormwater under control.

Tired of Trash?

July 2023

Deposit laws work! They cut down on beverage containers trashing the scenery, reduce waste going to landfills, and conserve resources.

Hard Stuff​ Disposal

June 2023

Advanced chemical recycling is coming to Pennsylvania. This process in effect re-makes plastics of all kinds into the equivalent of new, virgin plastic, ready to be reused.

Solar Saves Water

May 2023

Using solar panels consumes no water, emits no pollution, and releases no greenhouse gases.

Earth Day

April 2023

Earth Day is April 22. The single biggest thing you can do to protect Planet Earth? Get involved with local government.

Good Weeds

March 2023

These ideas help conserve and protect water: resilient gardens, lower-maintenance gardens, and embracing native “good weeds” like goldenrod, ironweed, and Joe Pye weed.

Well Water

February 2023

Most wells in the Brodhead watershed are drilled down to below the water table, where layers of rock, soil, sand, and sediments are saturated with water.

Snow Cover Matters

January 2023

It overlies so much ground, in fact, that snow cover controls Earth’s patterns of heating and cooling more than any other surface feature on the planet.

Real or Artificial?

December 2022

Choosing a real or manufactured Christmas tree has implications for the environment.

Family Forest Program

November 2022

Learn more about how the Family Forest Carbon Program enables property owners to access carbon markets.

Master Watershed Steward Program

October 2022

Learn more about the Penn State Extension Master Watershed Steward program.

Brown Lawn?

September 2022

After a summer of brown grass and endless, fruitless watering, here’s an idea: Instead of investing all that time, energy and water in grass, go on a lawn diet.

“Throw It Away”

August 2022

Ever wonder just exactly where “away” is? Except for occasional space junk, the things we throw “away” stay right here.

Ditch Single-Use Plastic

July 2022

Drinking straws, water bottles, shopping bags, plastic forks, styrofoam takeout boxes — we can make better choices for all of these things.

bird bath

Garden for wildlife

June 2022

Create a backyard habitat that supports native wildlife and protects your drinking water.

Become a water-miser

May 2022

Successful vegetable and flower gardeners have six strategies that save you time, energy and water.

Clean Water is Up to You

Compost your scraps

April 2022

Up to 95 percent of waste that could be composted ends up in landfills instead.

Plant native!

Create a native habitat

March 2022

Whatever the size of your garden, using native plants makes sense, and not just for water quality.

Ditch the grease

February 2022

Put your septic system on a fat-free diet to help the watershed – and yourself!

Please pass on the salt

January 2022

Snow-melting salt used in winter can seep into watershed all year long.