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Awareness of Pollution to Our Watersheds
 

Awareness of Pollution to Our Watersheds

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Awareness of Pollution to Our Watersheds

Awareness of Pollution to Our Watersheds

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    Awareness of Pollution to Our Watersheds  Awareness of Pollution to Our Watersheds Document Transcript

    • Session Three AwarenessAwareness of Pollution to Our WatershedsPreparations 1. Someone reads the ScriptureArrange a classroom table “altar” O God, you are my God, I seek you,with a cloth, a candle, a clear my soul thirsts for you; my fleshcontainer with water, and a Bible faints for you, as in a dry and wearyopen to Job 12:7-8. Before partici- land where there is no water.pants arrive, familiarize yourself Psalm 63:1with the Legacy water wheelsand posters mentioned in this Thus says the Lord: See, waters aresession, so that you can refer to rising out of the north and shall be-them as you share information come an overflowing torrent; theyabout pollution and degradation shall overflow the land and all that fillsto our Watersheds. Decorate the it, the city and those who live in it.room with appropriate Legacy Jeremiah 47:2posters. As class begins, inviteparticipants to add to the table 2. Invite participants to be silenttheir journal/notebook, sketched for a few minutes and meditateimages, pictures from magazines, on these images of drought andand/or pictures of their home flood, either of which could beriver and/or stream. Give thanks the legacy of climate change infor all that is gathered. Alabama. Meditate also on how humankind has betrayed God’sReflection: 10 minutes trust by not caring for the waters of Creation. YahwehPrayerLeader: At your command all things teach me your way, 3. Remind participants that it lead mecame to be: the vast expanse of in- can be difficult to begin iden-terstellar space, galaxies, suns, the tifying adverse impacts to our in the pathplanets in their courses, and this of integrity. watersheds. Yet, knowing wherefragile earth, our island home. the challenges are opens op-Response: By your will they were portunities to make informed Psalm 27:11a JBcreated and have their being. choices in our Care of Creation. On newsprint, make a list ofLeader: From the primal elements adverse impacts.you brought forth the humanrace, and blessed us with mem- 4. As the group is compilingory, reason, and skill. You made their list, encourage them tous the rulers of creation. But we think of all the things that couldturned against you, and betrayed affect either the quantity oryour trust; and we turned against quality of surface water (riv-one another. ers, streams, lakes and above-Response: Have mercy, Lord, for we ground water), groundwaterare sinners in your sight. Amen. (water found underground), andfrom Eucharistic Prayer C, BCP aquifers (underground layers of pervious rock, etc., containing water). Watersheds and Warming 3-1 35% post-consumer content
    • Session ThreeAwareness Education: 25 minutes Our focus for Session Three is Begin today’s Session with the on the sources of pollution and following activity from McDow- degradation to our watersheds ell Environmental Center’s Pond and how these same factors are and Stream Class (see Resources connected with climate change. for website). As time allows follow guidelines for Biodiversity and More About The World’s Water Pollution. Class can read extra When we think of water, we usu- materials at home. ally think of lakes, rivers, streams, clouds and oceans. But where, Global warming is already af- really, is the world’s water? Use fecting nearly all watersheds.Percentages this demonstration to help par- More frequent powerful stormsOceans = 97.2%, ticipants realize just how precious are increasing flooding andIcecaps/glaciers = 2.0%, the water is in Alabama’s rivers destabilizing river and streamGroundwater =0.62%, and streams. Note: For the best channels. More severe droughtsFreshwater lakes = 0.009%, results, use clear measuring cups and higher temperatures areInland Seas/Salt Lakes = 0.008%, and containers. placing additional stresses onAtmosphere = 0.001%, aquatic ecosystems. IncreasingRivers = 0.0001%. 1. Fill 5 one-gallon jugs with withdrawals for agricultural ir-From “Cousteau Almanac.” 1981. water. This represents all of the rigation and outdoor suburbanDoubleday/Dolphin: New York. water on Earth. use are further depleting stream 2. Remove 2-3/4 cups of water flows and lowering water tables, from one container and pour into exacerbating ecosystem stresses a clear container (container #1). and causing new human con- Container #1 now contains all of flicts over water. the fresh water on Earth. Conserving water keeps water 3. From Container #1, remove in our streams where it is needed 2 cups of water and pour into – and saves energy, while reduc- Container #2. ing CO2 output. Reducing stress- Container #2 now holds all of ors to our watersheds can increase the freshwater that is trapped in biodiversity and at the same time icecaps and glaciers. help offset the impacts of global 4. From Container #1, remove 8 warming. (Refer to Legacy “Ala- tablespoons and pour into Con- bama’s Watersheds” poster.) tainer #3. This represents all of the ground This is not just about “water- water in the world. sheds” or rivers or even drinking water, without which all God’s 5. Point out that Container #1 creatures – including humans now contains all of the water in – cannot live. It is about the Earth’s lakes, inland seas/salt whole complex web of creation seas, the atmosphere and rivers/ and our intimate connection to streams. Dip your finger into all of it. When we pollute or de- the water and let one drop hang grade our rivers and streams, the from your finger. This represents effects are widespread and like all of the water in Earth’s rivers a boomerang eventually come and streams. Water is a precious right back at us. resource with which Alabama has been blessed.3-2 Watersheds and Warming 35% post-consumer content
    • Session Three Awareness Biodiversity do very well when introduced Now let’s look for a moment at into non-native ecosystems the issue of biodiversity and why because their natural predators it matters. The following infor- are not present. Invasive spe- mation is from Alabama Water cies tend to be tolerant of poorer Watch, inspired by E.O. Wilson, water quality, which gives them The Creation. It helps us under- another advantage over native stand how pollution and degra- populations. They can become dation of our watersheds leads the dominant species in many to a decline in biodiversity. aquatic ecosystems as water quality deteriorates and native Habitat loss, Invasive spe- species population decline. cies, Pollution, Population growth, and Over-exploitation Pollution in any environment C of resources are the five main makes it harder for species to ex- environmental stresses that lead ist, especially less tolerant ones. It takes 25 gallons of water to a decline in biodiversity. The In the United States, we have the to produce acronym HIPPO is used to re- Clean Water Act to help guide, one pound of wheat. member them. protect, and restore our waters, yet the Act is not implemented fully in many areas. While great It takes 185 gallons of water (Divide participants into four groups, A B C D. Ask each group progress has been made in the to produce to silently read the paragraphs U.S. to reduce piped discharges one pound of chicken. by their letter below.) of pollutants – as from sewage treatment plants – pollution such It takes 1630 gallons of waterA Habitat loss occurs for a variety as oil and pesticides is increasing to produce of reasons. Sediments in runoff in storm runoff from parking lots are one of the biggest problems. and other urban uses. In devel- one pound of pork. Sediment is picked up from oping countries, environmental rainwater running off the land laws are often not in place to It takes 5,214 gallons of water in areas where various land use handle water quality issues to produce practices have left bare and poor- that arise from expansion and one pound of beef. ly covered soil. Another cause growth. These countries continue of sediment and habitat loss is to see major water quality and Fun Facts: McDowell Environmental Center erosion of streams and collapse water security problems. of stream banks caused by all the additional stormwater running Human Population growth D off of pavement and roofs, in- affects biodiversity by placing stead of soaking into the ground an even greater burden on our as it would in an undeveloped finite water resources. Closely forest. A third reason for habitat tied with this is both pollution loss is stream channelization, and Over-exploitation of natu- where streams are straightened ral resources. Without proper for quicker drainage of rainwater. water conservation measures Frequently, streams are lined with in place, public water supplies concrete or piped underground become polluted and begin to and virtually all habitat is lost. diminish. Improper land use and unchecked growth and develop-B Invasive species can be a real ment by an expanding popula- nuisance in both polluted and tion add additional stress to non-polluted streams. They often species living in local streams. Watersheds and Warming 3-3 35% post-consumer content
    • Session ThreeAwareness (Return to the newsprint, and off, which in turn has impacts add to the list of adverse impacts on waterways. Because paved to our watersheds.) roadways and other impervious (non-porous) surfaces do not Look again at the Legacy “Wa- absorb rainwater, runoff from tersheds” poster. Imagine how urban areas is two to five times unpleasant fishing, boating, greater than is that from forest- swimming and wading would land. A growing body of scien- be if the HIPPO effects we just tific research is finding a direct discussed had significantly relationship between the amount degraded these waters. HIPPO of impervious surface in a wa- is what affects the biodiversity of tershed and the water quality of species living in our streams and that watershed’s waters. rivers, and what affects them af- fects us. All species are creatures C Impervious surfaces such as of the same Creator. asphalt, concrete and roofing increase the volume and velocity The HIPPO Crossword Puzzle of the runoff. This often results from Alabama Water Watch, on in flooding, erosion and perma- 3-8, can be done at home - per- nent alterations in stream form haps with family or friends. and function. In addition, by If complex creatures blocking the infiltration of water cannot thrive in our rivers, More about pollution and its associated pollutants intodo we feel wholly comfortable (As time allows, divide partici- the soil, impervious surfaces in- swimming, pants into four groups, A B C D. terfere with natural processing of fishing Ask each group to silently read nutrients, sediment, pathogens paragraphs by their letter below.) and other contaminants, result- and ing in degradation of surface wa- wading in them? ter quality. By enhancing natural A Rainwater can become a source of pollution. A standard ap- drainage systems that allow rain proach to managing rain water to filter into the ground, rather is to turn it into a waste product than channeling it to create called “stormwater.” We then rapid surface drainage, negative try to get it off our property impacts of surface runoff can be as fast as possible, directing it minimized, property values im- across driveways and into street proved, and the beauty of God’s gutters and storm drains. Water creation cared for and enhanced. washing over the land, whether from rain, car washing or the D Threatened and Endangered watering of crops or lawns, Species (Refer to Legacy “Imper- is transformed into a gush of iled Species of Alabama” poster.) warm, dirty water that carries While Alabama ranks 5th for mud, oil, bacteria, pesticides and biological diversity, we rank 2nd other pollutants into our rivers for the number of species that and causes erosion, flooding and have gone extinct. Indeed, of all degradation of species. the species that went extinct dur- ing the 20th Century, half were B Urban and suburban develop- found in the Mobile River Basin. ment affects both the quantity And as our population grows and quality of stormwater run- and the economy develops, our3-4 Watersheds and Warming 35% post-consumer content
    • Session Three Awarenessneed for homes, jobs, and food Meditate and reflect on whatputs more pressure on the land- the cattle, the birds of the air, thescapes and rivers that shelter all creeping things of earth and thethese species. Alabama is ranked fishes of the sea are telling us,4th among the 50 states in spe- communicating to us, here andcies at risk of going extinct. We now in the Diocese of Alabamahave great biological wealth in and in our Alabama watersheds.our state, and we are losing it. Use the Data Sheet on 3- 9 to esti-As we lose species, we cannot mate your home and parish waterget them back for our children. usage. Bring your data sheet toExtinction is forever. By not sav- Session Four for the table “altar.” Prayer If you would learn more, ask the cat-ing the diversity on Earth now, tle, seek information from the birds ofwe do not give our children and Check your “Carbon footprint” the air. The creeping things of earthgrandchildren the choice to have at www.earthlab.com and begin will give you lessons, and the fishesit in their lifetimes. We are wast- pledging to reduce your CO2 of the sea will tell you all. Job 12:7-8ing Creation’s treasures that can output in the ways suggestednever be regained. on this site. Bring your results to Session Four for the table “altar.”Only 3% of the land in Alabamais in permanent conservation Identify a source of pollution onprotection. This puts Alabama parish grounds and in your ownnear the bottom of the states for neighborhood. Select someoneprotected lands. (See Resources to check for sources of pollutionfor link to Alabama’s Forever in industrial or farming areas inWild program.) the vicinity, if these are not in any class participant’s neighborhood.(Return to the newsprint, andadd to the list of adverse impacts Be prepared to advocate forto our watersheds.) good water policy by identify- ing your own policy makers atA vital growing Alabama means the local, state and national level,ensuring environmental sustain- (for example, council members, Let justice roll downability and economic develop- water boards, state legislators and likement that protects the biological senators, U.S. Congress-persons waters,wealth of the state. Our biologi- and Senators). http://www.con-cal legacy is part of the Creator’s gress.org/congressorg/home and righteousnessbenevolence, and is meant to like anprovide quality of life for all Where does your non-recycled everlasting stream.Alabamians. garbage go when it leaves your home? Call you local city or Amos 5:24 NRSVOur focus for Session Four will township offices and ask. Whatbe Care of Creation in Alabama is the water and soil quality inWatersheds. landfill neighborhoods? Why?Action: 5 minutes Check out what policies forChoose one or more of the fol- conserving water are or are notlowing activities to do at home in place in your community. Callbefore next session: your local city or township of- fices and ask. This activity could be divided among participants. Watersheds and Warming 3-5 35% post-consumer content
    • Session ThreeAwareness Resources: Wading in the Waters http://www.episcopalcafe.com/lead/environment/ See this website for what is happening environmentally in the Episcopal church. www.earthlab.com This site provides the most complete calculator for checking your “Carbon Footprint.” You can save your results, learn ways to improve your score, pledge specific actions, then check again to see the results of your actions in CO2 savings. http://www.outdooralabama.com/public-lands/stateLands/forever- Wild/ This link will take you to Alabama’s Forever Wild program to learn where protected sites are located and the species that are being protected. http://www.epa.gov/enviro/emef/ This website is the “EnvrioMap- The City of Trussville per” view from the Window on My Environment web-page. It is an hires someone interactive map with lots of information about the surround of your whose job it is church or backyard. If there are any little colored boxes on the map to go around of your neighborhood indicating toxic waste, water discharge site, or after a rain event other concern, you can click on the box and get the specific information of the business or other entity that is at issue. Experiment with this looking for runoff situations web page; there are lots of options to see features of an area. This is es- that need to be corrected sentially the same site mentioned for Session One. This site sometimes before they become has technical problems. Be patient; come back to it later. major problems. http://www.aces.edu/waterquality/themes/watershed.htm This site is described in Session One for finding your watershed. This time, no- tice information for water management in Alabama. http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/effects/water/index.HTML This page of the federal government’s Environmental Protection Agency website gives access to information about the effects of climate change on water availability and quality by region. http://www.outdooralabama.com/watchable-wildlife/regulations/ endangeredbycounty.cfm Website for list of threatened/endangered species by county. http://www.adem.state.al.us/WaterDivision/WQuality/303d/ WQ303d.htm This website has lists of impaired water bodies for each river basin. It identifies Section 303(d) list of the Clean Water Act. On page 10 there is a map of Alabma’s impaired rivers. http://www.campmcdowell.com/cmec/index.htm Visit this website to learn more about Camp McDowell Environmental Center.3-6 Watersheds and Warming 35% post-consumer content
    • Session Three Awarenesshttps://aww.auburn.edu/ This link connects to Alabama Water Watch.AWW is the source for the following Further Descriptions, and formuch of the material in this Session.Further Descriptions: There are four major forms of pollution: sedi-ments, nutrients, toxic substances and pathogens.Sediments are soil particles carried by rainwater into streams, lakes,rivers and bays, or eroded from within the stream itself that has beendestabilized by increased storm flow. By volume, sediment is the great-est pollutant of all. Sediment is generated mainly by erosion resultingfrom bare land, poor farming practices, construction, and development.While this soil is productive on land, in the water it cuts light neededby aquatic plants, obstructs waterways, worsens flooding, weakensfreshwater creatures, and covers aquatic habitat with sediment whileincreasing the cost to treat drinking water.Nutrients are substances that help plants and animals live and grow.Officials are most concerned about excessive amounts of two nutrients:nitrogen and phosphorus. Fertilizer, animal waste, and sewage treat-ment plants are the main sources of these substances. Excess nutrientsentering the stream from agriculture and urban areas can drasticallyalter the amounts and types of organisms within a stream.Toxic substances are chemicals that cause human and wildlife healthproblems. They include organic and inorganic chemicals and metals,pesticides, formaldehyde, household chemicals, gasoline, motor oil,battery acid, roadway salt, and medications flushed down the toilet.­Pathogens are disease-causing microorganisms present in human andanimal waste. Pathogens, such as bacteria and viruses, can become nu-merous enough to make public water supplies unfit for human use. Watersheds and Warming 3-7 35% post-consumer content
    • Session ThreeAwareness ALABAMA WATER WATCH https://aww.auburn.edu/ 1-888-844-4785 HIPPO CROSSWORD See if you can use the clues related to loss of species in the environment to complete the crossword puzzle. 1 4 5 3 6 2 ACROSS DOWN 2 The misuse of natural resources 1 These critters displace already stressed native critters in polluted streams. that leads to population decline of harvested species. 3 The addition of this into a stream makes it harder and harder for native species to survive. 5 As this increases, more and more streams are encroached upon through urban sprawl. 4 This can occur due to changes in land use, and leaves less space in the stream for critters to live. 6 A word that describes the number of species in a given area.3-8 Watersheds and Warming 35% post-consumer content
    • Session Three Awareness U.S. average = 100 gallons/person/day ALABAMA WATER WATCHhttps://aww.auburn.edu/ 1-888-844-4785 Watersheds and Warming 3-9 35% post-consumer content
    • Session ThreeAwareness3-10 Watersheds and Warming 35% post-consumer content