The story of Alyssa Borowske and Brittany Moffatt may strike some readers as quaint but not particularly important. Collecting eight pounds of lead sinkers isn’t a big deal, right? Wrong. The efforts of these two young women to keep lead out of our lands and ponds is a perfect example of the personal responsibility shared by all Vermonters toward caring for our state’s natural resources—the air we breathe, our water, our soils—and caring for our children, who will inherit this state. Each of us every day can help make Vermont a cleaner place to live.

Where to begin? One starting point is the Agency of Natural Resources’ EcoLogical Solutions brochures and website, which detail dozens of ways we all can help Vermont’s environment every day. The brochures and website provide a wealth of information about topics as diverse as making non-toxic house cleaners, environmentally sensitive lawn care tips, how to reduce our contribution to global warming, maintaining cars and trucks in a more environmentally sound manner, and helping Vermont’s forests.

While many of the brochures’ suggestions may seem inconsequential, they become tremendously important if enough of us follow them. For example, if one person stops using lead sinkers, the impact is minimal; if thousands of anglers use lead-free sinkers, the environmental benefit is great. As each brochure states, “All the little things we do, taken together, make a big difference.”

Among the specific recommendations spread across the one dozen topic areas:

The EcoLogical Solutions brochures are available by calling 1 (800) 974-9559. The EcoLogical Solutions website ( contains all of the information found in the brochures.