enter our creeks and rivers through storm drains that collect
and convey runoff from most streets in our communities. The
storm drains on your street may be stenciled with "No
Dumping Flows to Bay" or a similar message. Water flowing
through these storm drains is untreated and can carry
pollutants to our creeks and streams, which eventually go to
San Francisco Bay.
in our watersheds degrades the environment, harms wildlife
habitat, impacts the economy and jobs, causes higher taxes and
fees, and ultimately affects the health of humans as well.
Pollutants such as motor oil, paint products, pet waste,
litter, sediment, fertilizers and
pesticides are washed by rain and over-watered lawns into
neighborhood gutters and storm drains.
day-to-day activities, people can cause some of these
pollutants to enter storm drains and creeks without knowing
that they are causing harm to the environment. Some
pollutants, including pesticides, are found in our creeks at
levels high enough to be toxic to aquatic life. Other
pollutants, such as mercury, even in relatively small
quantities, contaminate certain fish that can be harmful when
eaten by small children, pregnant women, or anyone who eats
these fish frequently.
polluted water get treated through the sewer system?
sanitary sewer system carries wastewater from sinks, toilets
and other indoor drains to local wastewater treatment plants,
where processes remove most wastes before the treated water is
discharged to the Bay. However, wastewater treatment
plant processes cannot remove all solvents, metals or organic
chemicals from wastewater.
storm drain system carries rainwater and other runoff from
roads, parking lots, and roof down spouts directly to local
creeks and the Bay, with no treatment.
is being done to prevent pollution?
federal Clean Water Act and the California Water Code mandate
that all cities and counties, as well as businesses and
industries, take steps to prevent watershed pollution.
However, individuals also cause pollution and each of us can
prevent it by making very simple changes at home, work, school
and play. Preventing pollution is much easier and less
expensive than cleaning it up.
HERE to find easy ways to prevent stormwater pollution.