Are you "helping" or "hurting" our water? MTSU's Stormwater Program's Cynthia Allen spoke to the Murfreesboro Rotary Club on Tuesday about the importance of what we put into our creeks, rivers and storm drains.
Rutherford County comprises the Stones River Watershed, which is made up of 921 square miles. In that space are 1,031 stream miles and 22,691 acres of lakes.
Allen commented, "Chemicals and debris that flow into the storm drains end-up in our tributaries and lakes. Since this is a very karst area, the damage is done to both the ground water as well as that on the surface."
She explained that those who live on tributaries are the ones who make or break the watershed's quality. Plants along the banks help to filter debris and improve the quality of the water. Sadly 30-per cent of the Stones River does not meet federal standards.
Allen said that there are 69 rare plant and animal species that have been documented in the Stones River Watershed, including 8 rare fish species.
National Geographic released a study that the Caney Fork Watershed in neighboring Coffee County may have the most diverse water system in North America.
For information on how you can help improve the Stones River Watershed, contact Cynthia Allen at Middle Tennessee State University. Her phone number is 615-898-2660.