Stormwater Pollution Prevention Program
The City of Apalachicola is dedicated to improving the quality of area surface waters by reducing the amount of pollution carried to our river and bay due to stormwater runoff.
Stormwater is water that originates from rain and enters the City’s stormwater system. Precipitation which is not absorbed into the ground due to an impervious surface, like concrete or asphalt, is considered stormwater runoff.
The City’s stormwater system is designed to collect stormwater runoff in catch basins and storm drains and channel that water to our waterways using a network of underground pipes that make up our stormwater system. A variety of toxic pollutants are washed from the streets and parking lots into storm drains, creeks, rivers, and ultimately to Apalachicola Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. These pollutants include leaking oil, antifreeze, and gasoline from motor vehicles; copper dust, which is released from motor vehicle brake pad linings; rubber tire dust; soaps and chemicals used to wash motor vehicles; waste motor oil from vehicles, lawn mowers, and small equipment; and fertilizers, pesticides and insecticides. This type of pollution is called non-point source pollution due to the fact that it comes from many unidentifiable sources making it hard to regulate and prevent.
How you can Help
The best way to reduce stormwater pollution is to stop it at its source. Keep your storm drains clean and free of debris. Remember that pollutants flushed down storm drains directly affects the quality of our rivers and could possibly make them unsafe for boating, fishing, swimming and other water related activities.
Here are some tips to help keep our waterways clean:
- Don’t work on your car in a place where oil and grease could be washed into street gutters. Used motor oil should be contained and taken to a collection center. Most automotive shops provide this service.
- Grass clippings should be bagged and disposed of with yard waste. Dumping grass clippings down a storm drain can slow storm water flow and clog the drains.
- Do not wash dirty paint brushes under an outdoor faucet. Chances are the dirty rinse water will flow into a storm drain and into our rivers. Water-based paints can be washed in the sink and oil based paint should be cleaned with a paint thinner, filtered out, wrapped in newspaper and discarded with the trash.
- Pet droppings should not be discarded into storm drains or left in the yard. Clean up pet droppings and dispose of them in the garden, trash bins, or in the toilet.
- When washing your vehicle, park on grass or some other area that can absorb the runoff water. Washing your car on the street sends all the chemicals used to clean your car into a catch basin and directly into our water.
- Use pesticides sparingly and don’t fertilize right before it rains.
- Try to keep trash and other debris out of gutters and away from catch basins.
Report Illegal Dumping
Dumping waste down storm drains is not only bad for the environment but is illegal. If you have questions or a complaint please call the Apalachicola City Hall at 850-653-8222.
What the City of Apalachicola is Doing
The City is currently working with engineers to repair and replace much of the City’s aging stormwater utility pipes and conveyances. You can follow the progress of the stormwater projects by clicking on the following links. U.S. 98 &16th Street Project, Prado Outfall Project, Avenue I Project. You can see the construction plans by clicking here.
The City is also creating a public outreach/information program to inform the public on ways to reduce stormwater pollution. Current projects include updating stormwater management regulations, creating stormwater education brochures, maintaining a stormwater page on the City website with pertinent educational links and holding a series of public workshops on stormwater related environmental and planning topics.
Storm Drain Markers
The City storm water system was designed to collect storm water runoff in curb inlets/storm drains and channel that water to the local waterways using a network of underground pipes. A variety of toxic pollutants are washed from the roadways and parking lots into storm system which ultimately pour into the rivers and ocean. These pollutants include oil, antifreeze, and gasoline from motor vehicles; copper dust, which is released from motor vehicle brake pad linings; rubber tire dust; soaps and chemicals used to wash motor vehicles; waste motor oil from vehicles, lawn mowers, and small equipment; fertilizers, pesticides and insecticides. This type of pollution is called non-point source pollution due to the fact that it comes from many unidentifiable sources making it hard to regulate and prevent.
The City has placed storm drain markers to mark street storm drains. The markers remind people that only rain goes down a drain. They have the warning “No Dumping in Drains” printed on them. Look for the markers on city streets.
For more information on stormwater pollution prevention, link to the sites below:
For information about City stormwater regulations, click on the link below.
City Stormwater regulations
For information about how you can help contain stormwater on your property, rclick on the link below.