Rain Barrels Finally Put To Good Work
• Program to help conserve and save water gets its first big winter rainfall.
As the much-needed rain pours on the Palos Verdes Peninsula, it is imperative to be ready to utilize this water in the most efficient way.
On Nov. 17, Peninsula High students partnered with the West Basin Municipal Water District to distribute free rain barrels to residents who registered to receive one.
Rain barrels are used to collect rainwater that could be used for drinking and for outdoor purposes.
According to the Water District, by using this rainwater, pollution, which flows into nearby storm drains, sewers and waterways, will decrease exponentially, resulting in a cleaner ocean.
The barrels also play a role in making sure that the local water supply usage is maximized. The goal of the district is to reduce the reliance on imported water supplies and encourage people to make the most of their local water sources, such as rainwater.
Those who received rain barrels must follow the guidelines posted on the district’s website. Some of the rules include installation of the barrels within 30 days, email a photo of barrels that are mounted in a manner which allows it to receive water unimpeded from a rain gutter, and not be blocking pathways.
The barrel itself includes a two to three inch flexible downspout, water hose connector, overflow fitting and built-in mosquito screen. The barrels are made of material derived from recycled food barrels and come in a red or black color. Each barrel weighs about 16 pounds and has a 55 gallon capacity.
At Peninsula High, students who volunteered to help with the rain barrels signed up through the Associated Student Body and could receive five hours of service credit put towards Science National Honor Society. The students helped register residents and loaded about 400 rain barrels into cars.
“We put the rain barrels in the back of people’s cars and made sure they gave us the correct information beforehand,” said Morgan Dickson. “I actually brought one home from the event and use it every time it rains.”
Many students did not know the function of rain barrels or how effective they are in an effort to help save the environment. However, after this event, many students were much more informed about water conservation.
“I would definitely consider keeping a rain barrel,” Emily Wang said. “The rainwater it collects can be used for anything, from watering plants to washing cars. It is great for water conservation.”
Senior Ari Cho is currently taking an Advanced Placement Environmental Science class. Although she did not attend the rain barrel event, she heard about it through her friends and believes that it is a great way for the community to get involved with saving the environment.
“A lot of my friends do not know the true effects of their actions on the environment,” Cho said. “The world that we live in now will be the home to our future children. If we do not take care of it now through things such as these rain barrels, we will be living in our own trash and slowly destroying our home.”