A Stink Spirit - a polluted god, visits the bath house. Chihiro, assisted by the rest of the staff, removes discarded objects and pollution caught in the spirit's side. The Stink Spirit turns out to be a beautiful dragon. Miyazaki, describes helping to restore a polluted river as a child and watching it turn back into a clear, habitable ecosystem. The motif explores the damage of human pollution on the environment.
Thomas wakes up to the sound of tractors destroying the neighbouring marsh. Amy refuses to go to school, seeking solace in the marsh instead - a motif for her own life. While exploring the damaged environment, Amy finds a nest of abandoned goose eggs. Deciding to care for them, Amy turns a chest of draws into a makeshift incubator. The next evening, while her father is at a town meeting, Amy finds that the geese have begun to hatch.