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No, stormwater is not treated. This is a common misconception, but storm water is in fact not treated.
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Stormwater is excess rain or snowmelt that does not soak into the ground, and as it flows over rooftops, driveways, sidewalks, and roads, it picks up contaminants. Stormwater picks up that bit of spilled oil or gasoline in the driveway, or the discarded piece of chewing gum on the sidewalk, as well as excess fertilizer or pesticides from your lawn.
Stormwater travels through storm drains and pipes that directly enter rivers, lakes, streams, and the ocean. Keep an eye out for storm drains in your neighborhood, and remember to keep them clean!
It can be! Stormwater can be high in nutrients and sediment, as well as chemicals that are harmful to aquatic life. Excessive stormwater pollution from your community can cause beach closures, swimming bans, and drastically diminish water quality.
There are many ways you can help. Here are three simple ways:
The Town of Hampton has prepared a 5-year Stormwater Management Plan to protect stormwater from becoming polluted. Every year, the Environmental Protection Agency requires that the Town report on their progress in implementing the plan and update the plan to better protect stormwater. Each annual report provides an updated 5-year plan and describes the progress made for the year.
Visit the United States Environmental Protection Agency website for more information.