Public education and outreach is a key component of stormwater management. Well-planned public education and outreach programs will support and help achieve the goals of the other minimum control measures. Personal and household decisions can have a large impact on stormwater. From car washing to laundry detergent to dog walking, small alteration in daily activities can make a difference. Upper Southampton Township continues to take steps towards spreading awareness.
Did you know that the stormwater drains and inlets within your neighborhood have an important impact on the water quality of our streams?
Why? Because storm drains flow directly to nearby rivers and streams, not to wastewater treatment plants. Your city street is really like waterfront property and everything that rain washes off of your roof, yard, and driveway goes to the nearby water used for swimming, boating, and maybe even drinking. In addition, anything that is dumped into these drains, such as used motor oil, paint, or excess pesticides, goes directly into a local stream. Stenciling will remind everyone - homeowners, business owners, developers, and other citizens - not to dump anything into storm drains so we can protect our water from storm water pollution that may close beaches, cause unsightly weed and algae growth, and even kill fish!
From all of us! Storm water picks up litter, yard waste, excess lawn fertilizers and pesticides, leaking oil on streets and parking lots, pet wastes in parks and on lawns, and dirt from construction sites. All together, this adds up to more pollution than industries make!
Never dump substances down a storm drain that you wouldn't swim in or drink. Spread this simple message to everyone you know. Other ways to help include:
For more information check out The PA Department of Environmental Protection at www.dep.pa.gov
Note: Many of the sites listed in this document are not under the management or control of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and are not governed by the privacy or security policies of the Commonwealth. The following links are being provided because they have information or features that may be of benefit to MS4 permittees or other interested entities. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania does not necessarily endorse the views expressed or the facts presented on the sites. The Commonwealth does not endorse any commercial products that may be advertised or available on the sites.
Begin at the general DEP website: www.dep.pa.gov
From the list of DEP Keywords, choose "Water Topics"; then the following subjects can be selected from the drop down list:
1. Select " Stormwater Management" to access information on the Pennsylvania Stormwater Best Management Practices (BMP) Manual and related training info.
Under " announcements", there is information on NPDES General Permits and the revised Pennsylvania Stormwater Model Ordinance.
Under " general information", there is various storm water related information.
Under " technical information", there is information on Act 167, Post-Construction Storm Water Management, and various other storm water topics.
Under " general permits", there is NPDES permit information, the MS4 resource CD, the MS4 annual report form and Protocol (and also the Notice of Intent form and the request for waiver form), and Urbanized Area maps.
2. Select " Water Management", then " Bureau of Watershed Management" to access information on County Conservation Districts, Growing Greener, Watersheds, TMDLs, and other various water related topics.
3. Select " Water Quality" to access information related to existing surface water uses, stream re-designation, 303d impaired waters, TMDLs, and fish consumption advisories, as well as other various water related topics.
The website for the DEP Southeast Regional Office also has useful storm water information, resources and links.
The current DEP MS4 Protocol (3900-PM-WM0100h)
The current MS4 Annual Report form
The EPA MS4 regulations can be viewed at 40 CFR Part 122: EPA Administered Permit Programs:
For an explanation of the Phase II Storm Water Regulations found at 40 CFR Part 122, including the history and rationale behind the MS4 regulations, go to the December 8, 1999 Federal Register and select vol. 64, then enter page number 68722 and hit "submit". It is informative and recommended reading for MS4 permittees.
For further EPA MS4/SW information and resources, begin at the general EPA website: www3.EPA.gov
Under the "Quick Finder" section, select " Water"; this will bring you to various EPA water subtopics, or, you can select "Surf Your Watershed" to locate your watershed. The left hand column of this site lists " Adopt Your Watershed" and this site has educational, volunteer and other watershed information.
Under "Browse these EPA Water subtopics", some useful sites include:
1. Select " Stormwater", then select
a. "NPDES: Storm Water Program" for useful storm water information and links, including:
b. "NPDES" for an overview of the NPDES Permit Program, for information on Urban BMPs and Stormwater Retrofit Practices, and to access Storm Water Webcasts (archived & future). Under " Stormwater Qualifying Local Programs", there is information on numerous topics, including:
"Economic Analysis of the Final Phase II SW Rule (by chapter & appendix)"
"Guidance for Municipal Stormwater Funding"
"Polluted Runoff (Non-point Source Pollution)" for lots of useful information, including:
For environmental education resources, click here
For environmental finance programs, click here
For EPA MS4 Fact Sheets, click here
Examples of specific EPA storm water educational materials (some in Spanish also) available at Storm Water Outreach Materials and Reference Documents:
"Water Conservation Throughout the Home" - Helpful ideas for residents and troops earning their "Go Green" badges
"Stormwater and the Construction Industry Poster" (refer to Storm Water Outreach Materials and Reference Documents for more options with this poster)
"Storm Water Pollution Found in Your Area!" (door hanger)
"Take the Storm Water Runoff Challenge" (placemat)
Examples of specific EPA storm water information available at National Menu of Storm Water Best Management Practices (BMPs):
The Pennsylvania Organization for Watersheds and Rivers has information on funding sources for watershed groups, finding a local watershed group, and other watershed information.
Access to online environmental resources is available here.
The Environmental Directory calls itself the earth's biggest environmental search engine.
This National Resources Defense Council site documents some of the most effective strategies being employed by communities around the country to control urban runoff pollution.
The Pennsylvania Environmental Council has general information, resources, and links for storm water issues.
The Pennsylvania Resources Council is a citizen action environmental organization and has information on rain barrels.
The Villanova Urban Stormwater Partnership has information on storm water BMPs, education, databases, references, outreach, and the 2007 Pennsylvania Storm Water Management Symposium.
Advanced Stormwater Information Systems has storm water management software products and tools for MS4s.
The Stroud Water Research Center conducts water research and provides educational opportunities and information.
The Local Government Environmental Assistance Network is a public non-profit organization that provides technical, financial, informational, and research services to local governments, including a toolbox and a resource organizations database.
The Environmental Management Assistance Program provides free and confidential environmental assistance to small businesses (500 employees or less) dealing with environmental compliance, pollution prevention, waste minimization, water conservation, and energy efficiency issues.
A study of regionalization efforts for controlling storm water pollution in Maine may be of benefit to MS4s.
EPA's Office of Wetlands, Oceans, and Watersheds recently released a new version of its watershed handbook to help communities, watershed organizations, and local, state, tribal, and federal environmental agencies develop and implement watershed plans to meet water quality standards and protect water resources. The Handbook for Developing Watershed Plans to Restore and Protect Our Waters is designed to help anyone undertaking a watershed planning effort, but should be particularly useful to communities working with waters that are impaired or threatened.
Information on stormwater program funding:
The National Association of Flood & Storm Water Management Agencies has produced a guidance document for municipal storm water funding.
The University of Maryland, Environmental Finance Center.
An internet guide to financing stormwater management is available here.
Natural Resources Defense Council. Funding and Gaining Support for Stormwater Programs.
Florida Stormwater Association, Establishing a Stormwater Utility in Florida.
Kasperson, J. 2000. The Stormwater Utility, Will it Work in Your Community? Stormwater 1(1).
EPA information is available here.
EPA's Watershed Academy has added a new online training module on Developing a Sustainable Finance Plan. The training module is designed to help watershed organizations develop and implement sustainable funding plans. Case studies are included throughout the module to provide real examples of finance strategies employed by nonprofit watershed organizations in the U.S.
Local grant opportunities and contacts to help property owners and municipalities develop a financing strategy for storm water management and infrastructure improvements, including retrofit and demonstration projects:
The National Fish & Wildlife Foundation provides special grant programs, Delaware Estuary Grants and Five Star Restoration Grants; phone = 202-857-0166.
US Dept. of Agriculture, Natural Resource Conservation Service; phone = 717-237-2215
The PA Infrastructure Investment Authority (PennVest) implements a construction loan program and provides low interest loans and supplemental grants for infrastructure projects (including storm water).
The PA Coastal Zone Management Program (CZM) provides federal funds for projects in PA's coastal areas.
The League of Woman Voters' Water Resources Education Network (WREN) provides information on resources and grants.
TreeVitalize (A partnership to restore tree cover in Southeast PA).
Planning Commissions can be viewed for Act 167 Plan and other useful information:
EPA resources: Fact sheets for MCMs #1 and #2; a Toolbox with a variety of resources to help develop an effective and targeted outreach campaign is available here; an educational resource for kids, students, high school and teachers is available here; overviews of MCM #1 and MCM #2; info on attitude surveys
Click here for a guide to help government officials communicate clearly to the public.
Water Environment Federation educational materials for students, educators and the public.
The Pennsylvania Center for Environmental Education provides environmental education materials, resources and programs.
The Pennsylvania Association of Environmental Educators has information for environmental educators, including many links.
The Pennsylvania Department of Education, Environment and Ecology Section, describes current educational standards for Pennsylvania.
The Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission has a learning center and educational information.
The National Association of Flood and Storm Water Management Agencies has storm water education and guidance for municipal storm water funding.
The Partnership for the Delaware Estuary provides educational and outreach resources, including information for children, teachers, communities and volunteers.
The Philadelphia Water Department, Office of Watersheds, has developed a useful "Homeowner's Guide to Storm Water Management" which is available here.
Pennsylvania Cleanways provides information and education on stream/litter cleanup programs.
Storm drain stenciling resources (in English and Spanish) are available from C&R Stencils; storm drain markers are available from das Manufacturing and Almetek Industries; the Southeastern PA Resource Conservation & Development Council also has resources available, including stream signage resources.
The Air & Waste Management Association's Environmental Education Council has classroom lesson plans for non-point source pollution prevention for K-12.
The California Stormwater Quality Association has developed an Industrial and Commercial Handbook that provides general guidance for selecting and implementing BMPs to reduce the discharge of pollutants in runoff from industrial facilities and selected commercial businesses.
The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services has extensive guidance for creating a Pet Waste Outreach Campaign.
Local watershed groups can be a valuable resource for public education and participation:
The Center for Watershed Protection Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination Guidance Manual,
chapter by chapter, including the appendices.
EPA has developed a new Impaired Waters/TMDL homepage. The new Web page features an overview of the Clean Water Act section 303(d) program activities, highlights new resources, and provides easier access to program resources, such as EPA's new Water Quality Assessment and TMDL Information (ATTAINS) Web site. The site also features a new TMDL Stormwater Resources page that hosts several stormwater-source TMDLs and case studies highlighting the innovative approaches states are using to address stormwater.
Virginia Tech's Center for Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) and Watershed Studies has developed an online database to house selected TMDL-related information and documents in one central location. The searchable clearinghouse contains three types of resources: TMDL guidance documents, reviews and summaries of TMDL-related technical and trade literature, and state-by-state summaries of TMDL programs across the nation. State summaries are updated regularly for all 50 states and include the approach and methodology used to develop TMDLs in that state. In total, about 500 documents are available within this database.
EPA has created a new web-based tool to provide stormwater professionals with easy access to approximately 220 studies assessing the performance of over 275 stormwater BMPs. The Tool provides access to studies covering a variety of traditional and low impact BMP types, including retention and detention ponds, biofilters, grassed filter strips, porous pavement, wetlands, and others. Users will also find a series of essays aimed at improving understanding of BMP performance and the importance of volume reduction/infiltration in these assessments.
The Center for Watershed Protection offers MS4 communities a lot of storm water management resources and information, especially for MCM #5 issues. Their 2007 Urban Sub-watershed Restoration Manual No. 3: Urban Stormwater Retrofit Practices is a free download and focuses on retrofit practices that capture and treat stormwater runoff before it is delivered to a water body. It describes both off-site and on-site retrofit techniques that can be used to remove pollutants, minimize channel erosion, and help restore stream hydrology. Their 2000 National Pollutant Removal Performance Database for Stormwater Treatment Practices contains summaries of more than 135 urban pollutant removal monitoring studies. Their 1997 report on The Economics of Stormwater BMPs in the Mid-Atlantic Region presents cost data for urban stormwater practices, updates BMP cost prediction equations, and assesses the cost effectiveness of the BMPs most commonly used in the Mid-Atlantic region.
The Center also has numerous resources available addressing Better Site Design.
The Center for Watershed Protection's Stormwater Manager's Resource Center, Environmental Indicator Profile Sheet: BMP Performance Monitoring.
The Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) has developed a Green Values stormwater calculator that estimates savings from conventional versus green development for several scenarios.
The University of New Hampshire Stormwater Center and NEMO (Nonpoint Education for Municipal Officials) have launched the Innovative Stormwater Inventory web site. This searchable and amendable inventory is designed to highlight innovative BMP strategies implemented throughout New England.
The California Stormwater Quality Association has developed a New Development and Redevelopment handbook that provides general guidance for selecting and implementing BMPs to reduce pollutants in stormwater runoff. The handbook contains general information on planning and design concepts, source control and treatment control BMPs, and information on long-term maintenance of BMPs.
The Northern Virginia Regional Commission has developed a guidebook for private owners and operators of storm water BMPs. This publication is designed for individual property owners, homeowner's association representatives, and residential/commercial property managers. The guidebook outlines basic maintenance and planning tasks to keep Stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs) functioning properly, including information on types of BMPs, general maintenance needs, who should carry out maintenance, inspections, and planning for BMP maintenance costs. The guide also contains a sample inspection checklist, a BMP maintenance costs planning sheet, and a local government resource guide. 2007; 38 pages.
The Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts provides E&S, BMP, and educational resources.
The Construction Industry Compliance Assistance Center has information on low impact development, a storm water construction industry poster, and SW BMP information and research.
The International Stormwater BMP Database provides information on the design, selection and performance of SW BMPs.
Storm water management information is available from The Stormwater Authority.
The International Erosion Control Association provides educational and resource information.
The National Resources Defense Council provides information and case studies on green infrastructure alternatives to traditional hardscape solutions to wet weather discharge problems.
The Water Environment Research Federation recently unveiled a new Web site that gives landscape architects, designers, engineers, stormwater managers, elected officials and the public creative new ideas on sustainable stormwater practices. The site provides practical tools, frameworks for implementation and planning aids that can be adapted to any community or project.
The University of New Hampshire Stormwater Center 2007 Annual Report is now available online. Produced in partnership with the Cooperative Institute for Coastal and Estuarine Environmental Technology (CICEET), this publication contains performance data on the ability of stormwater treatment systems to treat water quality and manage water quantity.
The Planner's Guide to Wetland Buffers for Local Governments, from the Environmental Law Institute (ELI), identifies both the state-of-the-art and the range of current practice in protection of wetland buffers by local governments. The guide book presents ELI's detailed examination of more than 50 enacted wetland buffer ordinances around the nation and nine model ordinances, as well as several hundred scientific studies and analyses of buffer performance. The Guide provides to local governments considering enacting or amending a wetland buffer ordinance what they need to know to manage land use and development in these important areas.
The Local Government Environmental Assistance Network provides a useful storm water toolbox describing operation and maintenance practices from Oregon that can be applied to MS4s in any location. The site contains guidelines and checklists.
The California Stormwater Quality Association has developed a Municipal Handbook that provides general guidance for selecting and implementing BMPs to reduce pollutants in runoff from municipal operations.
The Center for Watershed Protection has information and resources for Municipal Housekeeping.