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Over the past few months, fleets of electric scooters have overtaken Austin sidewalks and roadways. They’ve been met with widespread use but also widespread criticism, and the opponents of these scooters have taken extreme measures to voice their displeasure: scooters have been found dangling from trees, dumped in trash cans, and most recently, submerged in Lady Bird Lake.
This scooter-dumping might seem like a relatively harmless act of vigilantism, but it actually poses serious consequences for the health of our ecosystems. The scooters’ ten-pound lithium batteries can rust and leak battery acid, contaminating our drinking water and harming the plants and animals that depend on this water source.
Whatever your opinion of these scooters, we can all agree that they don’t belong in our lake.
If you see a scooter in Lady Bird Lake or any other Austin waterway, call the Watershed Protection Department’s 24-hour pollution hotline at (512) 974-2550.