Frequent Questions

How can I help protect the environment during the summer months?

Using Water in the Summer

Everyday chores like washing cars, working with motors, fertilizing the lawn, walking the dog, and controlling pests can harm your streams and lakes. Storm drains collect water from outside our homes and businesses and carry it untreated directly to streams and rivers. Sewers collect water from inside homes and businesses and carry it to treatment plants, where it is cleaned before it reaches streams and rivers. So remember, only rain should go into storm drains, not trash, oil, or other pollutants.

Keeping the Air Clean and the Water Pure When You Go Boating

Improving Energy Efficiency in Your Home During the Hot Summer Months

Backyard Recreational Fires

As patio fire pits and outdoor fireplaces grow in popularity, so does backyard burning.  Homeowners enjoy fire pits and outdoor fireplaces for warmth, recreation and outdoor burning night-cooking. Increase your enjoyment of outdoor fires by knowing you’re doing all you can to burn cleanly, safely, and responsibly for your family, neighbors and community.

Taking Care of Your Car in the Heat

When servicing automotive air-conditioning systems, vehicle owners generally have several options to recharge a/c systems with refrigerant. One option is to top-off your car's system with refrigerant, and another is to evacuate and recharge the system. Both of these options will provide cool air in the passenger compartment for some period of time.

  • To save gasoline and money during those long vacation trips, keep your car tuned, your tires properly inflated, and drive carefully.
  • Gas mileage tips are available from

Going to the Beach? Learn When Beaches May Be Closed

Beach Advisories: Beach water pollution can occur for a number of reasons including stormwater runoff after heavy rainfall, treatment plant malfunctions, sewer system overflows, and pet and wildlife waste on or near the beach.

Going Fishing? Learn When Fish May be Unsafe to Eat

Fish are important in a healthy diet. However, some fish may contain methylmercury or other harmful chemicals at sufficiently high levels to be a concern. Federal, state and local governments issue fish consumption advisories when the fish are unsafe to eat. The advisories may suggest that people avoid eating certain kinds or certain amounts of fish.

  • Some advisories apply to specific water bodies (like lakes).
  • Some may focus on groups of particularly sensitive people.
  • Some advisories include notices of "no restriction" to tell us that certain fish are safe to eat.

For more information:

Staying Safe in the Sun

The UV Index is a tool that provides a forecast of the strength of the sun's ultraviolet radiation for your community. Search for your local UV Index forecast by ZIP code at the UV Index Web page.

Individuals, communities, and businesses can plan for and reduce the effects of extreme heat.


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