This article deals with a possible solution to water pollution in a Wisconsin suburb. However the results could be universally interpreted, with the method of prevention being employed in many areas of the world. The Article describes a scientist's experiment to test the amount of water runoff from his front yard into the local lake. Initially he observed that his soil only absorbed at water at a rate of 2 inches per hour, whereas the remaining runoff water from a major rainstorm was traveling down the street picking up oil, chemicals, pesticides and sediments built up on lawns, driveways and streets.
[...] (McManus) A solution must be found to this problem of water pollution within a reasonable time frame, or else diseases may spread rapidly and affect everything from livestock to fish products to the entire world's population. Two groups of researchers, one group headed by McManus and the other by Kertész, set out to explore possible direct causes and solutions to the growing problem at hand. Kertész took a narrow approach focusing on an aquatic bird, the Mallard(Phylum Chordata, Class Aves), and the effects of lead and copper have on its developing embryos. [...]
[...] Water pollution is a very relevant modern topic that will persist until proper action is taken to void its effects. Kertész showed how deadly certain commonly dumped wastes could be to the unsuspecting water fowl. Considering the large bodies of water and relatively small populations of organisms in relation to the total area many such intoxications often go unnoticed. A massive spill however, or simply accumulation of pollutants over time could be devastating, not only to the animals but to humans as well. [...]
[...] This of course contributed to a large water pollution problem, which he wanted to sedate. His experiment was to create a special garden that upon completion would absorb storm runoff at a rate of 5 inches per hour. He succeeded and in result triggered a community response, during which many residents built similar gardens. He observed that after this time the amount of toxic materials entering Lake Wingra had decreased almost in proportion to the resident's efforts. This in turn slightly altered the ecosystem of the lake by allowing several organisms to prosper that had been previously limited by their access to nutrients in non toxic parts of the lake. [...]
[...] The study done by McManus resulted in a decreased rate of storm water run off. He was able to decrease the amount of water making its way into the river, over the two year length of the study, by an astounding 16,000 gallons. The study also showed that a garden ideally built to capture extra runoff should be at least 150 square feet and should contain as little clay as possible. He also concluded that the toxin levels present in the river were greatly decreased when a large amount of gardens were put into place. [...]
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