What is Stormwater?

The term stormwater refers to rainwater. Rainwater that falls on city streets, parking lots, rooftops, industrial properties and lawns often becomes polluted by automotive fluids, industrial chemicals, and fertilizers before it enters the storm sewer system through catch basins and other drainage structures. Polluted storm water runoff is then carried through the city storm sewer systems and eventually discharged into our local rivers and streams without receiving any treatment. These pollutants can adversely affect water quality in local waterways, thereby creating a potential health hazard and degrading aquatic life habitat.

Why should I care?

As storm water runoff travels to our creeks, lakes and rivers, chemicals and other substances in stormwater can be toxic, even at small levels. Polluting our waterways can also mean we cannot boat, swim, or fish because it is unpleasant or even unsafe. We also rely on some of these same bodies of water for our source of drinking water and the survival of mankind.

What can we do?

Stormwater pollution can be controlled if everyone participates in the prevention of the pollutants from entering the world’s most precious resource. You can help prevent storm water pollution by eliminating illicit discharges, exercising responsible use of herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers in lawn and landscape maintenance and proper disposal of used oil and toxic materials. As the Mayor says ” We all have to be good stewards of nature for a healthy environment”. It’s your water Charleston. Let’s keep it clean.

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