Gathering fallen autumn leaves can prevent flooding, pollution
Nov 1, 2023, 4:11 PM
LEHI, Utah — Autumn leaves look beautiful on the trees, but fallen leaves can later lead to dangerous water conditions.
“The number one concern is flooding. Because [leaves] can get caught in the grates and stop stormwater from (entering) the drains. It can build up in the gutters and overflow into people’s yards,” said Shelbey Brewer, Stormwater Engineer at Lehi City.
Fallen leaves can land in storm drains, leading to pollution
Leaves in storm drains can also create pollution in lakes and rivers.
“The leaves contain lots of organic elements,” said Brewer. “If they decompose and go into our waterways, it eventually gets carried into Utah Lake and the Jordan River.
“All that organic matter contributes to the algae blooms that we see in the summer.”
Preventing flooding and pollution is why Brewer is encouraging citizens to clean up leaves before the snow gets too heavy.
You can help by:
- gathering the leaves in your yard by raking, bagging, and throwing them away, or, mowing over leaves with a lawnmower;
- removing leaves from gutters in front of your house and in your neighborhood;
- picking up leaves that cover storm drains.
Leaves can be disposed of in regular trash cans or green waste disposal bins.
- Utah’s fall colors are moving down in elevation
- Break out your chunky sweaters, colder weather is coming to Utah