PORT HENRY - Essex County students are out in full force armed only with a caulking gun, wire brush and storm-drain marker. For the next few weeks, residents of Port Henry, Westport and Elizabethtown will start to see little blue markers on storm drains around their towns.
Students in the area have been learning about storm water pollution and how it affects their local water systems like Lake Champlain and the Boquet River. The Westport Central School environmental science class is installing storm-drain markers.
During a storm event storm water runs down driveways, lawns, sidewalks and parking lots. It collects many pollutants along the way including dirt, chemicals and other debris. This water then flows to storm sewer systems and goes directly into lakes, rivers and streams. Polluted runoff is one of the nation's greatest threats to clean water.
Students have been learning about what each of their households can do to help keep storm water clean. These markers are a reminder to the community that if we all take responsibility to practice good household habits we can keep our water ways healthy.
The storm drain markers were bought through a grant from The Lake Champlain Basin Program that was received by the Lake George Regional Planning Board.
Essex County Soil & Water Conservation Technician Tiffany Pinheiro and local teachers have teamed up to get the students out helping the community.