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Environmental Services

working for clean rivers

Phone: 503-823-7740

Fax: 503-823-6995

1120 SW 5th Avenue, Room 1000, Portland, OR 97204

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Clean River Tips

Clean River Tips

At Home

  • Never dump used motor oil, paint or household chemicals on the ground or in a storm drain.
  • Don't pour household chemicals down the sink or flush them down the toilet.
  • Use non-toxic alternatives to home cleaning chemicals.
  • Don't buy more of a household cleaner or other chemical than you need for the job.
  • Read and follow directions on the use of household chemicals and disposal of containers.
  • Sweep driveways and patios clean instead of hosing them down.
  • Check for leaky faucets and turn off the water when brushing teeth to conserve water.
  • Pre-cycle. Buy products with less packaging.
  • Pick up pet waste and put it in the garbage can.

In Your Yard

  • Preserve established trees in your yard and neighborhood.
  • Don't overuse fertilizers and pesticides.
  • Plant trees, shrubs and ground covers that filter pollutants and reduce stormwater runoff.
  • Don't cut your grass too short. Adjust your lawnmower to the proper height to reduce runoff from lawns.
  • Plant native vegetation and choose plants that require little or no fertilizer.
  • When you water your plants and lawn, make sure water doesn't wash over streets and sidewalks.
  • Recycle yard debris, or use it to make compost, instead of raking it into streets where it can wash into storm sewers.
  • Use compost or mulch to hold moisture in the soil and control weeds.

Your Car

  • Drive your car less to reduce automotive fluid leaks on roadways.
  • Recycle used motor oil at the curbside.
  • Use a car wash that recycles wash water.

Your Boat

  • Don't dump trash or sewage from your boat.
  • Watch for fuel spills when you fill your tank.
  • Reduce your wake near the shoreline to minimize erosion.
  • Use soap without phosphate to wash your boat.
  • Use steel sinkers or washers instead of lead sinkers when you go fishing.
  • Use oil absorbent materials to catch drips from the fuel intake and the vent overflow.
  • Keep your engine well tuned and make sure seals, gaskets and hoses don’t leak.