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Stormwater pollution is when water from rainstorms, garden hoses and sprinklers causes runoff that collects harmful debris and flows through local creeks, rivers and lakes - eventually draining, untreated, into the ocean.
A watershed is an area of land that collects water whenever it rains or snows. Through gravity, water is channeled into soils, groundwater, creeks, and lakes and drains into larger bodies of water such as rivers. Eventually, the water flows to an ocean.
We all live in a watershed, and whatever we do to the land will affect water quality downstream.
No. Storm water flows do not receive any treatment because of the sheer volume of runoff - tens of millions of gallons on even the driest day - from an area encompassing more than 1,000 square miles.
Getting involved is a great way to keep your neighborhood and local waterways clean. Here are a few simple ways to help keep pollutants out of local water bodies: