Stormwater is the accumulated rain runoff from parking lots, buildings, sidewalks, streets, and other hard surfaces. Stormwater picks up dirt, trash, oil, grease, fertilizers, and other pollutants as it flows over land, eventually depositing pollutants into nearby streams and waterways. Pollution from stormwater affects the health of aquatic animals and plants, damages habitat, and can make waterways unsafe for fishing, swimming, and other recreational activities.
The graphic at left shows how stormwater runoff from a typical residential area picks up pollutants and carries them to a nearby stream (image is from a stormwater information sheet by the Southern Indiana Stormwater Advisory Committee, accessible at http://www.siswac.org/stormwater/)
Hampton Roads localities are dedicated to protecting the region’s waters by managing both the quantity and quality of stormwater runoff from urban areas. Regional stormwater management planning, communication, and information sharing is facilitated through HRPDC’s Joint Environmental Committee.
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