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Looking To Go Green? Free Rain Barrels To Qualified Edgewater Residents.


Photo: 48th Ward

The 48th Ward is partnering with the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District and the Edgewater Chamber of Commerce to encourage Edgewater to use rain barrels. The best part? Qualified area residents can get them at no charge.

So what, exactly, are rain barrels? They are any type of container that is used to collect water from a roof downspout. These barrels help reduce the amount of storm runoff from our roofs in order to be collected for future alternative uses. This water can then be used for watering your lawn, washing your car and other daily needs. One inch of rain on a 1,000 square foot roof yields 623 gallons of water.

Unlike the typically chlorinated city water, collected slightly acidic soft rain water is preferred to irrigate lawns and shrubs. Rain barrels also reduce the risk of basement flooding by directing water away from house foundations and help to avoid area flooding and pollution by keeping excess runoff from entering the sewage systems.

When officials from the 48th Ward heard about this program, they thought it was the perfect fit for the neighborhood’s growing environmental consciousness. Ginger WIlliams, assistant to Alderman Harry Osterman, told EVB: “We had heard about the 19th Ward doing a very successful program of partnering with the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) to give out rain barrels and, since the 48th Ward is very environmentally oriented, we thought it would be a great idea to have the program here.” 

The water collected in rain barrels should not be consumed by people or our pets because of contamination from leaves, bird droppings and other things on our roofs.

By keeping rain on properties and out of the sewer systems, rain barrels are a green way to revitalize Chicago’s stormwater reclamation procedures,” the alderman’s office added.

Residents can fill out an application by clicking here. Just scan the completed application and email it to environmental intern Adam Glueckert at adam48thward@gmail.com. Or, stop by the ward office at 5533 N. Broadway to fill out a form.

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