Ways to reduce stormwater pollution:
- Switch to reusable water bottles and reusable shopping bags. Plastics can end up polluting the lakes, rivers, and streams.
- Properly dispose of your household hazardous waste. Do not dump cleaning supplies, pesticides, or medication down your sink, toilet, stormwater drain, sanitary sewer or in the yard.
- Cut down on use of fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides. Follow directions on these products and use sparingly.
- Maintain your vehicles. Fix oil leaks and properly dispose of used oil, antifreeze, and other fluids.
- Clean trash from the curb and gutter or stormwater drain by your home. Debris in the street or gutter can flow into stormwater drains and cause drainage issues and pollution.
- Use rain barrels. Rain barrels can be a great way to use rain water effectively and decrease the stormwater runoff.
- Add a rain garden to improve the infiltration of stormwater runoff on your property.
- Minimize patio areas. Minimize impervious areas or consider using permeable pavers for your patio. Learn more at Environmental protection agency’s website.
- Use native plantings in you landscaping to help soak up and filter the stormwater runoff.
Pollutant Issues at HomePollutants such as oil, antifreeze, detergents, pesticides, lead, silver, and copper can get washed from driveways, backyards, parking lots, and streets into storm drains when it rains and when snow melts.
- The number one surface water quality problem nationwide involves fluids from vehicles, such as oil, gas, and antifreeze.
- Hosing off pavement surfaces wash pollutants into storm drains, which lead straight to our rivers. Sweep your driveway and sidewalks instead.
- Locate a hazardous waste drop off facility for old paint, pesticides, solvents, and batteries.
- Street litter such as Styrofoam, plastic, and paper blows into our inlets. Keep trash bins covered and do not litter.
- Pet waste gets carried away by stormwater, contributing harmful bacteria, parasites, and viruses to our river. Clean up after your pet.
Pollutant Issues at Businesses
At industrial sites, there is concern about chemical spills that contain toxic substances, smoke stacks that spew emissions, and uncovered or unprotected outdoor storage or waste areas that can contribute pollutants to storm water runoff. Best management practices include:
- Wash vehicles or equipment in wash bays hooked up to the sanitary sewer. Don't wash off detergents, oils, and greases into streets or storm drains.
- Divert rainfall runoff from fueling islands by building a canopy or cover over them.
- Waste and processed water of any type must be discharged to the sanitary sewer.
- Hosing off pavements wash pollutants into storm drains that lead straight to the river.
Report stormwater pollution problems by calling Public Works at 788-0301.