STORMWATER POLLUTION PREVENTION
It is the responsibility of each resident of the Borough of Kenhorst to be committed to protect our natural resources in the Borough for future generations.
You may also become involved in organizing a clean up crew within the Borough to clean the areas around the stream, tributary or just pick-up any debris or trash around your immediate area. With your help and commitment the Borough can be made a better place to live, work and play.
When it rains, it drains!
Your whole family can help keep common pollutants like pesticides, pet waste, and lawn care products out of our waterways! Rain water that has picked up contaminants from lawns, sidewalks, driveways, and roads can flow directly into a storm drain and affect areas used for swimming, boating, and drinking water reservoirs.
Lawn & Garden
Use pesticides and fertilizers sparingly! Avoid applying if the weather forecast calls for rain; otherwise chemicals could be washed into your local stream.
Sweep up yard debris instead of hosing down dirty areas.
Cover piles of topsoil or mulch to prevent sediment from blowing or washing off your yard.
Blowing grass clippings in the street can also block storm drains or add pollutants to water.
Remember to be a good neighbor and pick up your pet’s waste! Leaving waste on the ground can be a health risk by the bacteria that can be washed into a storm drain with rain water.
Wash your vehicle on a lawn or other unpaved surface to minimize the amount of dirty water flowing into a storm drain. Or take your vehicle to a wash facility.….they recycle the water used!
Check your vehicle for leaks and drips…these small drips on the road can be picked up with rain-water.
Be sure to clean up spilled fluids to avoid contamination of water into storm drains.
Recycle used motor oil or other fluids at a participating service station. NEVER pour these wastes down a drain!
Home Improvement Projects
Sweep up debris before it can be washed away with storm water and obstruct the storm drain or contaminate a waterway.
Increase the vegetated yard area to help with water filtration.
Use paints or solvents in small amounts, and be sure to clean up spills and properly dispose of rags and brushes.
Purchase non-toxic or biodegradable products whenever possible.
Source: Berks County Conservation District
When it Rains, It Drains
Understanding Storm Water and How it can affect your money, safety, health and the Environment.
What Happens When It Rains? Rain is an important part of nature’s water cycle, but there are times it can do more damage than good. Problems related to storm water runoff can include:
Flooding caused by too much storm water flowing over hardened surfaces such as roads and parking lots, instead of soaking into the ground.
Increases in spending on maintaining storm drains and the storm sewer system that become clogged with excessive amounts of dirt and debris.
Decreases in sportfish populations because storm water carries sediment and pollutants that degrade important fish habitat.
More expensive treatment technologies to remove harmful pollutants carried by storm water into our drinking water supplies.
Closed beaches due to high levels of bacteria carried by storm water that makes swimming unsafe.
We can help rain restore its good reputation while protecting our health and environment while saving money for ourselves and our community. Keep reading to find out how……
Restoring Rain’s Reputation: What Everyone can do to help. Rain by nature is important for replenishing drinking water supplies, recreation, and healthy wildlife habitats. It only becomes a problem when pollutants from our activities like car maintenance, lawn care, and dog walking are left on the ground for rain to wash away. Here are some of the most important ways to prevent storm water pollution:
Properly dispose of hazardous substances such as used oil, cleaning supplies and paint—never pour them down any part of the storm sewer and report anyone who does.
Use pesticides, fertilizers, and herbicides properly and efficiently to prevent excess runoff.
Look for signs of soil and other pollutants, such as debris and chemicals, leaving construction sites in storm water runoff or tracked into roads by construction vehicles. Report poorly managed construction sites that could impact storm water runoff to your community.
Install innovative storm water practices on residential property, such as rain barrels or rain gardens, that capture storm water and keep it on site instead of letting it drain away into the storm sewer system.
Report any discharges from storm water outfalls during times of dry weather—a sign that there could be a problem with the storm sewer system.
Pick up after pets and dispose of their waste properly. No matter where pets make a mess—in a backyard or at the park-storm water runoff can carry pets waste from the land to the storm sewer system to a stream.
Store materials that could pollute storm water indoors and use containers for outdoor storage that do not rust or leak to eliminate exposure of materials to storm water.
What is Storm Water? Storm water is water from precipitation that flows across the ground and pavement when it rains or when snow and ice melt. The water seeps into the ground or drains into what we call storm sewers. These are the drains you see at street corners or at low points on the sides of streets. Collectively, the draining water is called storm water runoff.
Why is Storm Water “Good Rain Gone Wrong? Storm water becomes a problem when it picks up debris, chemicals, dirt, and other pollutants as it flows or when it causes flooding and erosion of stream banks. Storm water travels through a system of pipes and roadside ditches that make up storm sewer systems. It eventually flows directly to a lake, river, stream, wetland, or coastal water. All of the pollutants storm water carries along the way empty into our waters, too, because storm water does not get treated!
Pet wastes left on the ground get carried away by storm water, contributing harmful bacteria, parasites, and viruses to our water.
Vehicles drip fluids (oil, grease, gasoline, antifreeze, brake fluids, etc.) onto paved areas where storm water runoff carries them through our storm drains and into our water.
Chemicals used to grow and maintain beautiful lawns and gardens, if not used properly, can run off into the storm drains when it rains or when we water our lawns and gardens.
Waste from chemicals and materials used in construction can wash into the storm sewer system when it rains. Soil that erodes from construction sites causes environmental degradation, including harming fish and shellfish populations that are important for recreation and our economy.
Where to go to continue the information flow? Your community is preventing storm water pollution through a storm water management program. This program addresses storm water pollution from construction, new development, illegal dumping to the storm sewer system, and pollution prevention and good housekeeping practices in municipal operations. It will also continue to educate the community and get everyone involved in making sure the only thing that storm water contributions to our water is….water! Contact your Storm Water Management Program Coordinator or the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection for more information about storm water management.
Source: Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. www.dep.state.pa.us