Water is polluted by chemicals and bacteria found on our roads, side walks and parking lots.

When heavy rain and snow melt flows over hard, impervious surfaces, the water accumulates pollutants, and then flows into a network of underground storm drains and into Sharon’s streams, ponds, and wetlands – untreated.

The seemingly small amounts of chemicals and other pollutants around your property may also be transferred by groundwater or overland flows to Sharon’s drinking water wells.  This contaminated water can be a major source of water pollution.

stormdrain diagram

This dirty water is called Polluted Stormwater Runoff.

Polluted runoff creates an unhealthy situation for swimming, fishing, boating and wildlife; and can impact drinking water resources.

You can reduce stormwater pollution and help keep our water clean by regularly maintaining your septic system; reducing chemical use around your lawn and in your house; and by picking up after pets and throwing the waste into a trash can.

Prevent Polluted Stormwater Runoff:

  • Pick up after your dog
  • Redirect downspouts
  • Prevent yard waste from being washed into stormdrains
  • Reduce lawn chemical use
  • Properly dispose of household hazardous waste

Pick up after your dog.

Unlike other sources that add to water pollution, such as household chemicals and lawn fertilizer, dog waste carries high levels of harmful E. coli bacteria and other pathogens* that can pollute our water and make us sick.

Please do the right thing for your health and the health of our water ways, by carrying a plastic bag while walking your dog, and throwing the waste into a trash can.

Redirect downspouts away from pavement.

Let the rainwater from your roof soak into your lawn, shrubs, rain garden, or rain barrel—rather than down your driveway and into a storm drain.

A one-inch rainfall on a 1,000 square foot roof yields approximately 600 gallons of water.

Prevent yard waste from being washed into storm drains.

Don’t pile grass clippings, leaves, or other yard waste in streams, wetlands, or near storm drains, as they may contain fertilizer or pesticides which can wash into waterways.

Consider starting a compost pile in your yard to recycle yard waste.

Reduce the use of lawn chemicals, and use organic products whenever possible.

Excessive amounts of phosphorus, a component of lawn fertilizer, creates weed and algae growth, causing significant water quality problems.

Properly dispose of hazardous household chemicals.

Never pour chemicals down a sink drain or toilet, on the ground, or down a storm drain.

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