Stormwater Management: Protecting the water in Minnesota’s 10,000 lakes

Laura Rescorla, Graduate Engineer, WSB

What is stormwater?

Stormwater is the water that flows over the ground after rain and snowmelt events. It runs off buildings, streets, sidewalks, and parking lots – anywhere it is prevented from naturally soaking into the ground.

Stormwater can pick up debris, chemicals and dirt before it reaches its final destination. If not managed properly, stormwater can also contaminate streams, rivers and lakes; destroy aquatic habitats and kill aquatic plants, fish and animals; or even contaminate drinking water if it is polluted.

What can you do to prevent contamination?

Start implementing these practices today to protect our water and encourage your neighbors to do the same!

  • Use pesticides and fertilizers sparingly.
  • Properly dispose of products such as insecticides, pesticides, paints, and used motor oil. Do not pour these chemicals – or any other household products – into storm drains or onto the ground.
  • Sweep up litter and debris from sidewalks, driveways, and parking lots – especially around storm drains. Do not put anything into storm drains.
  • Clean up pet waste and dispose of it properly.
  • Don’t overwater your lawn.
  • Use a rain barrel or plant a rain garden.
  • Go to a car wash or wash your car on your lawn so that the water infiltrates into the ground.


Image sources

Related Insights

We've got our eyes on the horizon.

All Insights