The City’s stormwater system is designed to collect stormwater runoff in catch basins and storm drains and channel that water to our waterways using a network of underground pipes that make up our stormwater system. A variety of toxic pollutants are washed from the streets and parking lots into storm drains, creeks, rivers, and ultimately to the ocean. These pollutants include leaking oil, antifreeze, and gasoline from motor vehicles; copper dust, which is released from motor vehicle brake pad linings; rubber tire dust; soaps and chemicals used to wash motor vehicles; waste motor oil from vehicles, lawn mowers, and small equipment; and fertilizers, pesticides and insecticides. This type of pollution is called non-point source pollution due to the fact that it comes from many unidentifiable sources making it hard to regulate and prevent.
Stormwater pollution has a significant effect on surface waters and is a major problem in cities all over the state and nation.