Stormwater and You - Make it Happen!

Stormwater Defined
Stormwater is a term used to describe water that originates during precipitation (rain or snow) events. Stormwater that does not soak into the ground becomes surface runoff, which either flows into surface waterways or is channeled into storm drains.

Stormwater Pollution
Stormwater pollution occurs when stormwater runoff comes in contact with contaminants before reaching the Pismo Creek or Pacific Ocean. Contaminants can be:
  • Animal waste
  • Automotive fluids
  • Chemicals
  • Detergents
  • Fertilizers
  • Food processing waste
  • Oils
  • Pesticides
  • Sediment
  • Trash
  • Many more substances
Storm Drain System
The city's storm drain system is designed to route all untreated runoff from impervious surfaces including roofs, parking lots, roads, sidewalks, and other hardened surfaces to the Pismo Creek and to the Pacific Ocean. The system is supplied by storm drains, cross gutters, and surface swales that can be seen on city roads, parking lots, and freeways and highways.
Sewer System
Domestic wastewater is discharged from plumbing fixtures and appliances and then flows into the domestic wastewater sewer. The domestic wastewater sewer system is made up of many sewer lines extending from individual lots of land. The line from each lot connects to the sewer line. The city maintains sewer lines located under public streets or alleys that connect to a "trunk sewer." The main trunks of the sewer end at the City of Pismo Beach Wastewater Treatment Plant.
Storm drain systems are separate from wastewater systems
Plumbing fixtures and appliances from homes and businesses, such as:
  • Clothes washers
  • Dish washers
  • Garbage disposals
  • Showers and bath tubs
  • Toilets