We all have a role in keeping the Chesapeake clean

By Betsy Nicholas and Angela Haren, Baltimore Sun Op Ed, July 4, 2019

This year, we’re experiencing these negative effects of stormwater pollution in full force, and it’s no coincidence this is coming after Baltimore’s rainiest year on record. When stormwater flows into our waterways, the excess pollutants rob the water of oxygen and can create dead zones — areas without enough oxygen to support most marine life. It shouldn’t surprise any of us that scientists are predicting that the Chesapeake Bay is on track to have its biggest dead zone in nearly a decade this summer.

So, yes, we face many challenges to protecting our waterways, and stormwater pollution is near the top of the list. But we also have many opportunities to create meaningful change.

We can all take simple, everyday actions to make a difference.

The two of us were part of the team that recently developed the Clear Choices Clean Water initiative for the Chesapeake Bay region. This initiative includes a series of simple pledges residents can make to limit harmful stormwater pollution.