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At home, at work or out and about: Keep it out of the stream!

Washing your vehicle?

Wash it on the lawn so the detergents and water are soaked into the ground. That helps naturally treat the (preferably organic) soaps you use. Or go to a commercial car wash which treats and recycles the water.

You a smoker?

Don’t throw your butts on the streets. Every butt that lands up on the road goes into the stormwater system, then into the Karamū Stream and out to sea. International environmental agencies estimate that trillions of butts are tossed onto roadways and pavements a year, all landing up in the sea via stormwater networks.

Littering?

Just don’t. There is no reason to throw litter on the ground. Put your takeaway packaging, soft drink bottles, dirty nappies and picnic leavings in the nearest litter bin – there are hundreds across Hastings. If there is not one close to you, put the rubbish back in your car or bag and take it home where you can recycle what you can and add the rest to your general rubbish.

Walking the dog?

Luckily, most dog walkers these days do pick up their animal’s leavings. However there are still a few who don’t and the faeces they leave behind land up in the Karamū Stream, via the stormwater system. Carry a bag, pick up the poo, and put it in a doggy-do litter bin if there’s one handy, or take it home and put it in with your general rubbish.

Painting?

Take care cleaning your brushes and rollers. Environmentally-friendly paint can be cleaned from brushes onto the lawn, but water and oil-based paints should be cleaned in a sink so that the paint goes through the sewer system to the wastewater treatment plant, where it is treated. Never tip things like paint, stain or thinners directly into a stormwater drain, or onto paving where rainwater can wash it into a drain.

Mowing and pruning?

Sweep up your grass and hedge clippings and add them to your compost or green waste rubbish pile. Hosing them into the gutter (or letting the rain do it for you) puts them into the stormwater system, adding to the nitrogen load on the Karamū Stream.

Renovating or building?

Whether it’s your garden, home or business you are renovating there will be mess, with top soil, dust and dirt potentially being washed by the rain or a hose into the stormwater system. Shovel up top soil and put it back on your garden. Other waste, like cement dust, should be shovelled up and disposed of with your general rubbish at the transfer station.

Working on machinery or vehicles?

Grease and oil are particularly bad for the environment. Make sure you have some way of ‘catching’ excess grease or oil, and a way of cleaning it up if there is a spill. Keeping it if off the concrete, and therefore out of the drains and waterways, is extremely important.

Cleaning out the spa or pool?

Pool and spa chemicals do not belong in the Karamū Stream. The pipes that take your pool and spa water should be attached to the wastewater (sewer) system, so that the water goes to the wastewater treatment plant to be treated before it is piped out to sea.

Industrial and commercial businesses have particular requirements with regard to keeping harmful materials out of the stormwater system. See: Stormwater retention and detention

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