THUNDER BAY – During an average rainstorm (1 inch in 24 hours) more than 2700 litres (about 700 gallons) of water runs off the roof of a typical home. In most cases, that water quickly pours out of downspouts, down the driveway or across the lawn, and into city streets, carrying with it loads of pollutants and contaminants from pet waste, to vehicle fluids and fertilizers. Water that goes down the street drains flows through storm sewers directly into our creeks and rivers that feed Lake Superior.
One easy way to slow the flow is by installing rain barrels at each downspout. EcoSuperior and the City of Thunder Bay have once again teamed up to help homeowners with a discount sale on rain barrels.
“We sold nearly 600 rain barrels last year,” says EcoSuperior executive director Ellen Mortfield. “They are very popular with area residents and thanks to support from the City of Thunder Bay, we are able to offer them at a great price.”
City residents with a Thunder Bay water account in good standing may purchase one barrel per household at the discounted price of $45. Only 375 discounts are available this year. Additional barrels, or barrels for residents not on the city water system can be purchased for $65.
The barrels are repurposed olive and pickle barrels, made of food-grade plastic with a capacity of 220 litres (about 45 gallons). They come equipped with a mosquito-proof screened lid, overflow hose and on-off spigot. Units can be connected to further increase water storage capacity.
“So far this spring, we’ve had long dry periods between rain or snow events,” says Mortfield. “More rain barrels allow you to store more water for a thirsty garden.”
The barrels are on sale while quantities last at EcoSuperior’s office at 562 Red River Road at Hill Street. They are open Monday to Friday, 8:30 – 4:30 and cash, cheque or debit are accepted for payment. To receive the $20 discount, you must present your City of Thunder Bay water account number.