Who's Minding the Planet? | YSI Earth Week

2nd Annual YSI Earth Week

During the 2nd annual YSI Earth Week, employees at our Yellow Springs, Ohio facility once again showed their commitment to awareness and protection of their local water sources. 

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Pictured: Watermark Champion and YSI employee, Monti Taylor, holding one of 500 saplings.
These were planted by our volunteers in a single afternoon to protect native species.

Impactful Projects

Through our Xylem Watermark employee volunteerism and engagement program, YSI is a proud and active member of the Little Miami Watershed Network (LMWN), with the mission to promote and protect the Little Miami River watershed. 

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Fun fact! Ohio pioneered the national scenic rivers movement as the first state to start a Scenic Rivers program, and the Little Miami River was the first to receive this designation in 1968. As part of the year-long celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the Ohio Scenic Rivers Act, there will be lots of opportunities to get out and volunteer on local Ohio rivers If you are interested in getting involved, contact your regional Ohio Department of Natural Resources Scenic Rivers program. 

During Earth Week, we partnered with Little Miami Watershed Network members for thee impactful events in the area: 

  1. Invasive species and trash removal at Caesar Creek Access to the Little Miami River
  2. Planting of over 500 trees along the Little Sugarcreek
  3. Storm drain labelling in local communities

Throughout the week, 25 YSI employees volunteered an impressive 80 hours in these events; contributing to our goal of volunteering 600 hours in water-related activities in 2018.

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Pictured left to right: YSI/Xylem employees Jason Wheeler, Mary Alice Waggoner, Michelle Wolfe, Ron Metzger, Jess Moyer, Jessica Webb, Tim Yeager, Tim Carter. You can learn more about our Xylem Watermark program, through which Xylem employees volunteered over 35,000 in water-related activities around the world in 2017.

Removing Litter & Invasive Species at Caesar’s Creek

Many of our volunteering events focus on awareness and action about riparian restoration.  This is an important focus especially in the Little Miami River watershed, where invasive bush honeysuckle and garlic mustard have compromised the stream banks, leading to stream bank erosion and runoff. 

To curb this effect, we partnered with Ohio Department of Natural Resources to remove bush honeysuckle, garlic mustard, and trash from the bank of the Little Miami River at the Caesar Creek Access.  Though the job is not yet finished, and we will need to return to remove more, we can already see the impacts of our annual work.

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Pictured left to right: YSI/Xylem employees Tim Yeager, Tim Carter, Mary Alice Waggoner, Jessica Webb, Jess Moyer, Michelle Wolfe, Ron Metzger, Jason Wheeler

Along the bank, we saw where our honeysuckle removal during Earth Week 2017 opened up space for wildlflower growth, seen for the first time in years. We are proud of our ongoing work at the Caesar Creek Access and look forward to seeing the park transform as we continue.

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Pictured: Evidence of improvement - wildflower undergrowth where honeysuckle bush once dominated in 2017.

Tree Planting along the Litter Sugarcreek

Once an area has been cleared of invasive species, it is important to reinforce the stream bank with native, soil-stabilizing species. In partnership with Bellbrook Sugarcreek Park District, we worked to restore a park along the Little Sugarcreek, where a massive removal of bush honeysuckle has just been completed. 

In just four hours, we planted 500 native saplings and 50 native yearlings.  In our ongoing partnerships with Bellbrook Sugarcreek Park District, we are proud to help restore and build new parks for the Little Miami community to enjoy and learn.

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Pictured: 100 native yearlings to be planted by YSI/Xylem and Bellbrook-Sugarcreek Park District teams

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Pictured: YSI/Xylem employee David Stoler

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Pictured: Watermark Champion Jess Moyer

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Pictured left to right: YSI/Xylem employees Jess Moyer, Lisa Babb, Ed Hammer, Zach Ewing, Kyle Loges, Monti Taylor, Alex Kleine, Dan Hutt, Jennifer Bishop, Akash Sohal, Byron Swanson, Doug Posey, David Stoler.  (Not pictured, volunteer and photographer Patrick Beatty)

Storm Drain Labels

Another important tenant of our volunteerism program is awareness. 

So, we helped Little Miami River Kleeners apply storm drain medallions in neighborhoods in the Little Miami River watershed; reminding the community members that untreated stormwater can sometimes be discharged directly to the river, and anything they dispose of on impervious surfaces or apply to their lawns can end up in the river. 

In just three hours, we applied 185 medallions, and mapped miles of storm drain medallions for the City of Beavercreek, Ohio.  Throughout the year, we will continue this work to inform our communities of the impact we can have on local water resources and guide them on how they can change behaviors and get engaged.

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Pictured: Little Miami River Kleeners storm drain medallions
To learn more about how you can prevent stormwater pollution, visit the Little Miami River
Kleeners

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Pictured: YSI/Xylem employees Ashok Sohal

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Pictured: YSI/Xylem employee Tony Brewer

Each year, the Yellow Springs YSI/Xylem site hosts 15 Watermark volunteering and educational events around the community.  If you are interested in joining us or could use our help on an upcoming project, contact our local Watermark Champions:

Jess Moyer at Jessica.moyer@xyleminc.com

Monti Taylor at Monti.taylor@xyleminc.com

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