Everyone swears their hometown is the greatest, and here at Wear.Panda we’re no different. Panda got its start on the east coast in “that other Washington” before moving to Seattle in 2016. While we’re sure DC has lots to recommend it, we strongly prefer the Puget Sound to politicians.
As a lifelong sailor, Wear.Panda director Leigh Macaulay has spent much of her life on these special waters. The Puget sound is a massive estuary with over 1300 miles of coastline. It’s home to many species of marine life including several pods of Orca and the nearshore environment shelters hundreds of different bird species.
Like many regions though, Puget Sound is threatened by pollution. While the iconic rain purifies the air, all that water has to go somewhere and runoff collects and carries all manner of pollutants straight into the Sound. This has the effect of acidifying the waters, making it tougher for organisms that need hard shells and bones such as shellfish, plankton, and other fish. It also affects oxygen concentrations, which set off disastrous ecological chain reactions.
So what can we do? Seattle has already taken some great steps in banning plastic bags and straws, but more action is needed to protect this unique region. Local businesses must examine their practices to ensure that they’re minimizing their impact on the environment, and individuals need to hold those organizations and governments accountable for the damage done. At the individual level, here are some suggestions from the Washington State Department of Ecology.
- When you wash your car, do so either with an environmentally friendly cleaner on a permeable surface, like your lawn, or go to a commercial carwash.
- Use fertilizers sparingly in your garden.
- Take care of drips! Leaky faucets and leaky cars can do more damage to the environment over time than you would think!