Friday, September 16, 2011

Think before spraying

Even in environmentally-conscious Seattle, there are still chances to witness bonehead moves. My turn came today while passing by this block near Carkeek Park:

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What I saw was a woman spraying Roundup onto plants in that vegetated area, which is a drainage ditch. Hopefully it will be natural-filtration runoff-retention garden someday, but for now it's a ditch. With an aggregate bottom. Leading into a pipe that continues into the distance.

How do I know she was spraying Roundup? The tank she carried had the Roundup logo plastered on the sides.

For readers outside the Seattle area, this is a big deal because this location is on a hillside to Carkeek Park. In fact that's the park in the distance, only 3 blocks away.

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Anything you put in that ditch flows downhill and into Pipers Creek -- a newly restored salmon spawning habitat -- and into Puget Sound.

People, this is a prime example of how individual choices affect the immediate environment. Not only does the Roundup have a deleterious effect, but destroying the 'weeds' speeds up the flow of stormwater when it rains.

If you spin around the Street View and go uphill, there are several blocks of pavement, ditch, and the intersection of NW 105th Street, Holman Road and Greenwood Avenue. Motor oil, fuel and other pollutants get washed downhill.  Removing 'weeds' in that ditch leaves nothing to get in the way of those substances as they flow toward the Sound.

It's all connected, that's why it's called an ecosystem.

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