Stormwater and urban runoff pick up pollutants as it flows through the storm drain systems – networks of channels, gutters and pipes that collect runoff from streets, neighborhoods, farms, construction sites and parking lots – and empties into local waterways, such as creeks, rivers and beaches. Unlike sewage, which goes to wastewater treatment plants, stormwater and urban runoff flow untreated through the storm drain system. Anything thrown, swept or poured into the street, gutter or catch basin – the curbside openings that lead into the storm drain system – can flow directly into our waterways. This includes pollutants like trash, pet waste, cigarette butts, motor oil, anti-freeze, runoff from pesticides and fertilizers, paint from brushes and containers rinsed in the gutter and toxic household chemicals. For additional information on the Countywide efforts for pollution prevention, visit H2OC Cities and the South OC Regional Clearinghouse.
The City of Aliso Viejo has developed a comprehensive pollution prevention program under its local implementation plan (LIP). The City’s goal is to continue to educate the community on ways to protect and preserve our environment by eliminating urban runoff and implementing more “eco-friendly” lifestyles through an array of programs and special events.