Pollutants that go down the storm drains could end up in your water. These contaminants also have the potential to harm local wildlife in nearby waterways.
Watch the video and click each culprit below to learn about common pollution issues and how you can prevent further impact to our groundwater.
The use of pesticides in your yard can contribute to groundwater pollution. The toxins present in pesticides, such as pyrethroids, can easily seep into the ground, especially when overwatering occurs. This poses a significant threat to groundwater quality.
Explore eco-friendly and less-toxic alternatives to pesticides. Learn about integrated pest management techniques to get rid of unwanted insect visitors. Make sure to properly dispose of pesticide chemicals to prevent contamination. For guidance on eco-friendly pest control and safe chemical disposal, reach out to your local Master Gardener.
Explore eco-friendly and less-toxic alternatives to pesticides. Learn about integrated pest management techniques to get rid of unwanted insect visitors. Make sure to properly dispose of pesticide chemicals to prevent contamination. For guidance on eco-friendly pest control and safe chemical disposal, reach out to your local Master Gardener. Check out and follow our guide to No-Spray Days, which let you know when to spray pesticide so that it’s most effective and least harmful on our ecosystem and waterways.
The number one pollutant in our stormwater collection system, litter causes many problems for our groundwater. It can clog the basins, which reduces the infiltration and replenishment of rainwater into the groundwater. The solution is simple: don’t litter!
Motor oil is one of the hardest contaminants to remove from our water, so it should never be dumped down storm drains. When you change the oil in your car, runoff can go into the gutter and enter the stormwater collection system.
Paints and paint thinners become serious offenders of groundwater pollution when they are dumped on the ground or into storm drains. When cleaning after a home renovation project, toxins can enter the stormwater collection system and pollute the water supply.
Most pools do not need to be drained often. But even regular maintenance, such as cleaning the filter, can cause pollution to enter the storm drains if not done properly. When pool water is drained into or near a storm drain, chlorine and other chemicals can enter the groundwater.
Before dumping sewage, which includes RV waste, wastewater, commercial kitchen oil, or any cleaning solution, you have to find the right place to do so! Sewage is harmful to the environment and should never go down the storm drain because it can contaminate our groundwater.
If you fertilize or use pesticides in your yard, you may be polluting the groundwater. Inadvertent overwatering leads to chemical contaminants flowing into the storm drains. Nitrates from fertilizers and toxins from pesticides are soluble pollutants that can quickly reach our groundwater.
Start by figuring out when and how much you need to water your yard. Research local water schedules and smart gardening practices. For questions about eco-friendly and less-toxic alternatives, integrated pest management, and proper chemical disposal, contact your local Master Gardener.
Find out when to spray for pests to avoid the potential of polluted runoff affecting waterways and ponding basins.
Learn how to solve pest problems with less-toxic products—keeping your children, pets, and garden healthy!
Learn more about these beneficial bugs and how they keep problem pests under control naturally, without the use of harmful chemicals.
Learn more about the 153 flood basins managed by the District, wildlife in the area, and our unique stormwater system in our Ask An Expert video series.