Illicit Discharge Detection & Elimination

We all have an essential part to play in keeping our waterways clean. One of the ways you can help do this is by limiting illicit discharge. An illicit discharge is “any discharge into a stormwater system, river, stream or water body that is not composed entirely of stormwater”.

Illicit discharge may be the result of dumping everyday chemicals and bacteria into your local sewer. A common misconception about storm sewers is that they go to a wastewater treatment plant. They go directly into our rivers, lakes, streams, or wetlands.

Steps to Take

  • Be alert! Report any suspicious discharges.
  • Recycle used oil, antifreeze, and batteries.
  • Clean up hazardous spills immediately.
  • Wash your car on the grass so the soil will filter water, detergent, and dirt. Or use a commercial car wash, where dirty water is sent to the waste treatment facility.
  • Do not blow leaves, grass clippings, and mulch into the street. Sweep them up if they do land there.
  • Pick up litter and trash near storm drains.
  • Bring household products, including paint thinners and solvents to a hazardous waste dump site. Bring paint to paint stores for proper disposal. Small amounts of paint can be allowed to dry and placed in the trash.
  • Clean up your pet waste and dispose of it in the trash.