Growing the Gulf Coast: Rain barrels installed in Prichard homes work to save money and the environment

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PRICHARD, Ala. (WKRG) — Thanks to Alabama Power, the Mobile Bay National Estuary Program and other partners, rain barrels are being installed in the Prichard community to save residents money while also saving the environment. More than 200 rain barrels have been installed in over 50 Prichard homes so far.

Volunteers install these barrels into people’s homes free of charge. The units catch the rain water through the gutter system and this water can be used for washing cars, watering the garden, outdoor water activities and more.

“You can use free water for water activities for my grandkids and washing my car as opposed to using my water and having to pay for it,” said Amika Hudson, a resident of Prichard who said she loves her rain barrels. She said her grandkids can do all the water activities outside until the barrel runs out, and she does not have to worry about it.

Troy Ephriam, former mayor of Prichard, said the area just south of the I-10 corridor is somewhat of a bowl that floods easily.

Typically in the month of June, the area gets about six inches of rain. This year, it was more than doubled at 14.2 inches that was recorded at Mobile Regional Airport. This immense amount of water was put to good use and also prevented a large amount of storm water and pollutants from ending up in our waterways. In addition to the practical application in residents’ homes, the rain barrels also put money back into people’s pockets by cutting back their water bills.

To learn more about the rain barrel program, call the Mobile Bay National Estuary Program at 251-431-6409.

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