Stormwater that does not soak into the ground becomes surface runoff. Runoff can become polluted as it runs along impervious surfaces, such as: parking lots, roofs, and lawns. Runoff picks up pollutants like, automotive fluids, fertilizers, pesticides, bacteria, litter, and pet waste. The runoff flows into a stormwater conveyance and eventually makes its way to our waterways (streams and rivers), where we like to fish and swim.
In Berkeley County, stormwater runoff is not treated at wastewater facilities before it enters the streams and rivers. That is why it is important to know how to dispose of pollutants properly. There are over 15 impaired waterways in Berkeley County. There are also many best management practices that can be implemented to reduce and treat stormwater. Some easy ways to clean up stormwater is to plant trees and native vegetation, install a rain barrel, or build a rain garden. The goal for stormwater is to slow it down, spread it out, and soak it in. Other goals include: preventing water pollution, reduce flooding, improve resiliency to climate change, beautify neighborhoods, and create habitat.