• Businesses can play an important role in keeping our waterways clean by implementing green practices!
  • It is important to remember that the storm drain system is different from the sanitary sewer system.
  • When rainfall comes into contact with pollutants, those pollutants can be washed into the storm drain system and end up in our waterways.

Examples of situations where stormwater runoff could be polluted through exposure to pollutants include:


  • Improper or incomplete clean-up of a release or spill of hazardous or non-hazardous materials or wastes in an outdoor, uncovered, area;
  • Poor housekeeping in outdoor storage areas;
  • Inadequate secondary containment and/or coverage of hazardous or non-hazardous materials or wastes;
  • Leaky dumpsters, or dumpster lids left open;
  • Liquids or powdery materials tracked outdoors by forklifts or other vehicles from indoor processing areas; and
  • Leaky vehicles, equipment, compressors, etc.


Pollutants can also be washed into the storm drain system and local waterways by non-stormwater discharges such as irrigation runoff or in wastewater from hosing down or pressure washing polluted surfaces into the storm drain system.

Common Pollutant Sources

  • Automotive fluids, such as antifreeze and motor oil
  • Greasy mop water dumped into the stormdrain
  • Food waste leaking from a dumpster
  • Concrete and painting-related wastewater
  • Commercial vehicle washing wastewater
  • Pressure washing and surface cleaning wastewater
  • Sediment (dirt, sand, etc.)
  • Food waste and/or grease
  • Hazardous or non-hazardous materials and wastes that are leaked, spilled or dumped

Learn how you can protect our water. Please call (916) 808-4H2O (4426) for information on how your business can be in compliance.

Become a Sacramento Area Sustainable Business

Is your business looking for opportunities to be recognized for using sustainable practices? The Sacramento Business Environmental Resource Center offers a program that certifies businesses for implementing green practices that improve efficiency, energy and water conservation, and waste reduction. Learn how you can become a Sacramento Area Sustainable Business Partner


Preventing Pollution for Outdoor Watering:

Learn more about what your industry can do:


Information available in other languages. Go to the business section of our Documents page.

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