Categories for Uncategorized

Monarchs on the move

In recent years, a combination of food and habitat loss has resulted in a 90% drop in Monarch butterfly populations.  Guest blogger Ann English shows how you can help revive these dwindling populations by providing a much needed food source for their journey through the Mid-Atlantic area!

Mulching: Exploring its many benefits

There are a lot of beneficial things you can do for your garden. However, mulching should make it to your list of top priorities. Simplified, it is defined as the act of putting a protective barrier (mulch) over bare soil and around plants. What makes this simple method highly recommended?

All in favor of conserving gasoline, raise your right foot!

Monday, September 22, was Car Free Day. This worldwide movement promotes going car free (or even car-lite!) for the day to celebrate more sustainable forms of transportation and a greener environment.  Who says it only has to be celebrated one day a year though?  Try to incorporate sustainable transportation into your daily routine or even start

The hippest energy happenings: National Drive Electric Week

With National Drive Electric Week upon us (September 15-21) and the Solar Homes Tour (October 4-5) coming up quickly, now is a great time to check out some of the coolest technologies in clean energy!  I’ll be guest blogging this week and next to give you all the info you need on these upcoming events.

Thanks for a great County Fair!

Did you know that the County Fair is the most important outreach event for the Department of Environmental Protection each year?  It is the time where DEP staff get to talk to County residents, share our latest programs and events and get the pulse on what is important to County residents.  
Image of Earth Day Cleanup

National Public Lands Day and Days to Serve

For those who love visiting Montgomery County’s fantastic park system, this month offers the opportunity to give back.  Montgomery Parks is a proud supporter of Days to Serve and National Public Lands Day.  Days to Serve runs September 11-28 with National Public Lands Day on September 27th. Both of these events celebrate volunteerism and our

Limited time: Free bikeshare program

Bikeshare is affordable for many – but for some folks it still may be a challenge. Free bikeshare memberships are available for those who meet income eligibility requirements. The program is called “JARC” – Job Access Reverse Commute. Qualified individuals will receive free membership in Capital Bikeshare and free bike safety training, a free helmet,

It’s a prime time for cool cash savings!

With August here, summer fun is at its peak…and so are the temperatures. Last year, temperatures were, on average, 88 degrees Fahrenheit. As you can imagine, this means that a lot of us turn on our air-conditioners. What you may not be aware of is that as the summer heats up, this is a prime

Remodeling? Learn to identify green building products

Just as the words “fresh” and “natural” have become marketing buzzwords with the foods that we consume, so too have “green” and “eco-friendly” become the defining jargon for the building products we purchase. Truly “green” products can increase rental or resale value of property and lower operating costs, but how can you be sure you’re
Image of a green roof.

Apply for up to 80% in credit towards your Water Quality Protection Charge

Do you have a stormwater management practice on your property?  A dry well, rain garden, green roof or another design practice that helps reduce stormwater pollution in the County? If you have a qualified storm water practice on your property, you are eligible for a credit towards your Water Quality Protection Charge (WQPC)! Both residential and
Green Treefrog Todd Pierson

A green treefrog takes up residency in the Paint Branch Watershed!

During a warm summer night, a Montgomery County FrogWatch volunteer, Maura McMullen, heard a strange call that she was unable to identify from the County’s frog and toads website. She sent in the recording to DEP to help her identify the species. DEP identified the frog as a green treefrog, the first recorded finding of

Sign Sweep cleans up County right-of-ways

On Wednesday, July 9th, the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection participated in a “Sign Sweep” to remove election and other signs from the County right-of-ways.  The Sweep team — about 60 colleagues from the Departments of Environmental Protection, Housing and Community Affairs, Permitting Services, and Transportation — gathered in the morning for instructions. Teams then

Elysian Energy Green Week Scavenger Hunt

Elysian Energy, a Montgomery County Certified Green Business, hosted a Green Week Scavenger Hunt for employees the week of Earth Day.  The staff was challenged to go green, and as you can see from the video, they had a blast doing so.

Joining DEP: Finding an energized community

Hi, my name is Michelle Vigen, and I am thrilled to join Montgomery County DEP to support and advance its clean energy and climate protection goals. I am particularly excited to be involved in the implementation of the county’s commercial building benchmarking law and the commercial property-assessed clean energy (PACE) program (in development). I look

Recording ribbits! My experience as a new FrogWatcher

A group of newly minted FrogWatch volunteers met one evening in Wheaton for a field FrogWatch training. We set off in a line after dark to a spot by a large stormwater management pond and set our smart phones for the required 3 minute period of frog monitoring. Unfortunately it was only 45 degrees Fahrenheit

Trees are the Answer!

Around our office, it seems like no matter what the question is, the answer can always be tied back to TREES! When you think about it, trees are true workhorses for the environment. They increase property values, provide shade to help lower energy bills, clean and cool our air and water, reduce runoff from impervious

Pyle Middle School goes green!

If you were looking to be inspired, there was no better place to be than Pyle Middle School on the evening of May 28th.  That night, the 6th grade class hosted a Green Gala where they showed how every student and person in the County can make a difference for their environment. 

Support local, support green

As a new resident of Montgomery County, I’ve been excitedly researching all of the sites, shops, and natural areas near my home.  Moving can be exhausting, but transitioning services and setting up a new living space is a fun way to learn more about the County. One thing I’ve noticed is that there are some
Natural Resources Career Camp Group photo

Apply now for this summer’s natural resources careers camp!

Are you a high school student interested in studying natural resources? If not, do you know a student who is? Then don’t miss this opportunity to participate in a week-long camp in Garrett County, MD, to explore careers and college programs in natural resources. This year’s camp will run from Sunday, July 20 through Saturday,
Image from Bike to Work Day 2012

Bike to Work Day is Friday, May 16th!

Imagine this: it’s a cool morning, the sun is rising higher and the wind is rushing past your ears. You roll by cars stopped in traffic and turn onto a tree-lined path. The air smells great and you feel alive! As you get closer to town you join-up with other 2-wheeled riders at a pit

May is American Wetlands Month

How often do you think about wetlands?  The answer for many of you will probably be once, maybe, twice a year.  And for a few of you, you’ll have tilted your head and asked – why would I think about wetlands? At the Department of Environmental Protection, we think about wetlands a lot: how much benefit
Image of volunteers from the H2O Summit

Recap of the Montgomery County 4th Annual H2O Summit

On Saturday, March 22, 2014, over 350 Montgomery County residents celebrated World Water Day by attending the fourth annual H2O Summit hosted by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC) at the Silver Spring Civic Building. The main goal of the H2O Summit is to raise awareness about water
Image of a river

Getting my feet wet: Starting a new job with DEP

Ah, Spring!  A time to shed the gray cloak of winter, celebrate longer days, and get some fresh air.  In addition to these seasonal changes, I also get the pleasure of starting an exciting new outreach position with Montgomery County’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).
Snapshot of the Make a Difference TV Show

Watch us on the Make a Difference TV Show!

My Green Montgomery and the Department of Environmental Protection were featured on the Montgomery County cable show “Make a Difference”. Jessica Jones, Program Manager of Outreach and Education, discusses Earth Month, Stream Stewards, the Green Business Certification program and other volunteer opportunities. 
Image of woman walking dog.

Walking the Poop Loop

Last year, I decided it was time for me to adopt a furry creature. I can honestly say that I was not truly aware of what I was getting into, but bringing Bear into my life was one of the best decisions I have ever made. Eight months later, I am still learning what it
Image of a wind farm

When local “Greens” work together, the public wins

For the past year and half, Chesapeake Bay Area Greens have been meeting to figure out how best to coordinate our efforts. These groups include Annapolis Green, Bethesda Green, Green Gaithersburg, GreenWheaton, Silver Spring Green, Poolesville Green, and our most recent addition, Baltimore Green Works. While we’ve all supported each other’s efforts in the past, we’ve
Spotted Salamander

Meet the County critters: Spotted salamanders

What are Salamanders? Salamanders are amphibians like frogs and toads.  Amphibians are cold blooded animals that spend at least part of their life in water.  Unlike frogs and toads, salamanders have tails and teeth on both their upper and lower jaws.