How can I help reduce the pollutants in stormwater runoff?
- Sweep up leaves and grass clippings that accumulate on driveways, sidewalks and streets.
- Collect pet waste and dispose of the waste by flushing down a toilet.
- Redirect roof down spouts from paved areas to grassy areas for percolation to the shallow aquifer.
- Wash your car on the lawn rather than on the driveway - the nutrient-rich soapy water is good fertilizer for lawns.
- Plant native landscaping and reduce the amount of grassy areas – native plants require less irrigation, maintenance, fertilizers and pesticides.
- Dispose of used motor oil, paint and other household hazardous wastes at a designated collection center.
- Never throw trash or cigarette butts onto the streets where they can enter the storm sewer system.
- Use fertilizers and pesticides in accordance with the Ordinance passed by the City Council in 2014. Fertilizer usage is banned from June 1 through September 30.
How is stormwater runoff treated in the City?
Throughout the 50+ years of development in the City, treatment of stormwater runoff has evolved due to environmental regulation. Initially, all of the runoff from buildings, parking lots and roadways was designed to drain into canals or the Indian River Lagoon (IRL) system. In the early-1970s, legislation was passed that aided in the reduction of this pollution. A significant portion of the stormwater runoff from the City is polluted with various contaminants and drains directly into the IRL system. The City is planning numerous projects that will re-route stormwater runoff and construct filtering devices to clean stormwater runoff in areas where re-routing or retention is not possible.
Are there laws regulating the discharge of stormwater runoff?
Regulations require the reduction of pollutants in stormwater runoff to Florida’s waterways. The Clean Water Act in the early-1970s helped to reduce industrial and wastewater discharges, but did little to address the widespread pollutant loadings from storm sewer systems. In the late-1970s, the SJRWMD began requiring that private developments retain a portion of their stormwater runoff on-site. More recently, the EPA passed legislation (NPDES program) that enforces strict stormwater regulations on city and county governments. Additional regulations from FDEP have established pollutant Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) for receiving water bodies. These regulations require city/county governments and other stakeholders to further reduce pollutants in stormwater runoff.
What are the pollutant loadings generated by the City (discharge to the Banana River Aquatic Preserve)?
- Total suspended solids – 163,000 lbs/yr.
- Biological oxygen demand (BOD) – 28,000 lbs/yr.
- Total phosphorus – 2,030 lbs/yr.
- Total nitrogen – 8,975 lbs/yr.
Is my property located within a flood zone?
The City has two flood zones – “within the 100-year flood zone” and “outside the 100-year flood zone”. These flood zones are based on land elevation, water table elevation, soil types and hydrological flooding information. On the barrier island, storm surge is the most likely source of flood hazards. The flood hazard lines are established by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and can be found on the Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) for the City. The FIRMs of our area can be found via the City’s Community Development Department web page.