Contact the Township at (215) 453-6000 to report any pollution incident that is impacting stormwater sewers, surface water or any Township waterways!
What is Non-point Source Pollution and how is it Tied to Stormwater?
Non-point source pollution is contamination stemming from many sources, accumulating to negatively impact stream quality. Non-point source pollutants can be discharged over a wide land area, from many different locations, and most find their way to a stream through stormwater. When it rains, stormwater washes substances off the land and carries them into local streams. Much of this polluted "runoff" enters storm drains, which lead directly to local waterways commonly used for swimming, fishing or drinking water supplies. Snowmelt and irrigation have the same effect, carrying pollutants from plowed fields, city streets or suburban backyards. Sediment, nutrients, organic and toxic substances originating from land-use activities can all become non-point source pollution, washing into one stream at many different locations. What we do to the land, we do to the water. Download the PDF to read more.
You can help manage stormwater by volunteering:
- Participate in a stream or creek cleanup
- Plant trees along a stream or creek
- Stencil storm drains with dumping warnings
- Organize a neighborhood pollution watch
When It Rains, It Drains
"When it Rains it Drain's" The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection brochure on storm water. Recent Federal regulations will require most municipalities in the area to adopt new methods to help improve the quality of stormwater runoff to the creeks and streams. An important aspect of these requirements is raising public awareness of the importance of this issue, and advising the Township residents how they can help in reducing stormwater pollution.
Stormwater is water from precipitation that flows across the ground and pavement when it rains or when snow and ice melt. The water seeps into the ground or drains into storm sewers. These are drains at street corners or at low points on the sides of streets. Collectively, the draining water is called stormwater runoff.
Stormwater becomes a problem when it picks up debris, chemicals, dirt and other pollutants as it flows or when it causes flooding and erosion of streambanks. Stormwater travels through a system of pipes and roadside ditches that make up storm sewer systems. It eventually flows directly to a lake, river, stream, wetland or coastal water. All of the pollutants stormwater carries along the way empty into our waters, too, because stormwater does not get treated!
Rain, by nature, is important for replenishing drinking water supplies, recreation and healthy wildlife habitats. It only becomes a problem when pollutants from our activities, such as car maintenance, lawn care and dog walking are left on the ground for rain to wash away. Here are some of the most important ways for Township residents to prevent stormwater pollution:
- Properly dispose of hazardous substances, such as used motor oil, cleaning supplies and paint - never pour them down any part of the storm sewer system, and report anyone who does.
- Use pesticides, fertilizers and herbicides properly and efficiently to prevent excess runoff of these items.
- Look for signs of soil and other pollutants, such as debris and chemicals, leaving construction sites in stormwater runoff or tracked into roads by construction vehicles. Report poorly managed construction sites that could impact stormwater runoff to the Township.
- Install innovative stormwater practices on residential properties, such as rain barrels or rain gardens, that capture stormwater and keep it on-site instead of letting it drain away into the storm sewer system.
- Report any discharge from stormwater outfalls during times of dry weather - a sign there could be a problem with the storm sewer system.
- Pick up after pets and dispose of their waste properly. No matter where pets make a mess - in a backyard or on open space - stormwater runoff can carry pet waste from the land to the storm sewer system to a stream.
- Store materials that could pollute water indoors and use containers for outdoor storage that do not rust or leak to eliminate exposure of materials to stormwater.
Township residents can learn more about these new regulations and the need to improve stormwater quality by visiting the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection's (DEP) stormwater website: Department of Environmental Protection
What Residents can help watch for:
- Sediment leaving a construction site in stormwater
- Spills (Chemical, Gas, Oil)
- Illegal dumping activity into streams or storm sewers (PLEASE CALL 911 FIRST)
- Dry weather flows from outfall pipes into streams (72 hours after a rain storm)
Residents may be the first to recognize "illicit" discharges dumping into storm sewers or coming out of from storm sewer outfalls. If you see an "illicit" discharge please report that to the township by one of the following methods:
- Call the township office at 215-453-6000
- an e-mail to our Public Works Director at PublicWorks@hilltown.org
The links below will open in a new browser window.
- Bucks County Conservation District
- Perkiomen Watershed Conservancy
- Center for Watershed Protection
- DEP Southeast Regional Office
- EPA Nonpoint Source Outreach Toolbox
- Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
- Guidelines for Maintaining Streams in Your Community
- EPA - Green Infrastructure
- EPA - Best Management Practices for SWM
- EPA SWM
- EPA National Pollutant Discharge
- DEP Construction SWM (booklet)
Some document(s) below require that you have installed the Adobe Reader, a free program that allows you to view portable document format (PDF) files right from your browser. If you do not have it already you can download directly from Adobe.
- A Citizens Guide To Understanding Stormwater
- Brown Water, Green Weeds
- Clean Water Partners
- DEP Facts & Falsehoods Trivia
- DEP Intro To Wetlands
- DEP Wetlands Functions At The Junction
- EPA Structures & Mosquitos
- EPA How Does Your Garden Grow
- EPA Protecting Water Quality From Urban Runoff
- Homeowners Guide To Stormwater BMP Maintenance
- Maintain Your Bmps II
- Maintain Your Bmps
- MS4 Pollution Reduction Plan - TMDL Plan
- Protecting Water Quality From Urban Runoff
- Quick Resources Guide to MS4 Program
- Stormwater And Runoff Primer
- Stormwater Management Ordinance
- Stormwater Management An Overview For Auto Recyclers
- Ten Things To Prevent Stormwater Runoff
- The Solution To Stormwater Pollution
- Water Efficient Landscaping
- What Is Non Point Source Pollution And How Is It Tied To Stormwater
- When It Rains It Drain's
- Guidelines for Maintaining Streams in Your Community
- Illicit Discharge
- Seasonal SWM Prevention Tips