Stormwater and NPDES
Stormwater is water that flows over the ground surface when it rains without being absorbed by vegetation, soil, and other pervious areas. Impervious surfaces like roofs, streets, and sidewalks increase the amount of stormwater that reaches the storm drains. Runoff from roads and lawns can carry pollutants (oil and grease, pesticides, fertilizers, salt, chemicals, etc.) that go untreated, degrading streams and lowering the quality of water. In 1972, the Federal Clean Water Act created the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit program, allowing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to regulate pollutant discharge from pipes and ditches. For more information regarding stormwater runoff and NPDES see the following links:
- Protecting Water Quality from Urban Runoff
- After the Storm
- EPA's Official NPDES page
- Center for Watershed Protection
- Best Management Practices for Stormwater
Lemont Township has a municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) permit and has filed a Notice of Intent (NOI) to comply with the permit conditions. This permit requires stormwater pollution to be reduced through six minimum control measures:
- Public education and outreach
- Public involvement and participation
- Illicit discharge detection and elimination (IDDE) - Report a Problem
- Construction site runoff control
- Post-construction runoff control
- Pollution prevention and good housekeeping
In order to meet these control measures, Lemont Township has created a Stormwater Management Program (SWMP). Additionally, the Township files annual reports with the IEPA that describes work completed in the past year. As part of the 2019-2020 effort, the Township completed an Environmental Justice Assessment (EJA). The EJA gives an overview of socio-economic factors within the Township and how they might affect stormwater management and public education in the future. See the completed report below.
How You Can Help
Residents and businesses can take steps to help protect Lemont Township's waterways. To prevent stormwater pollution, avoid dumping anything into storm drains, clean up after your pets, wash vehicles in commercial areas that lead to a sewage treatment plant, install rain gardens, and limit the use of fertilizer and de-icing salt. For more information about stormwater pollution and tips on how you can reduce your impact, see the links below.
- Tips to Reduce Stormwater Pollution
- IL DNR Rain Garden Instructions
- Chicago Botanic Garden - Rain Gardens
- Cook County NPDES
- 10 Things You Can Do to Prevent Stormwater Runoff Pollution
- Implications of Climate Change
- NASA Climate Change
Lemont Township has two hazardous material collection days each year.
If you suspect illegal dumping is occurring or there are suspicious discharges from the storm sewer system, please immediately report it here.