In 40 CFR 122.26(b)(7) stormwater is defined as “stormwater runoff, snow melt runoff, and surface runoff and drainage”. Stormwater has become a focus issues because when rainwater and snow-melt flows over construction and industrial site surfaces, the precipitation runoff can pick up pollutants such as sediment, bacteria, hydrocarbons, metals, debris, pesticides, fertilizers, solvents, acids, oil and grease and transport them to our rivers, lakes, and coastal waters without treatment. This can kill fish and other wildlife, destroy aquatic habitats, and cause stream bank erosion. Urban Storm water runoff have become a major cause of impaired water quality nationwide, contributing to 13% of impaired rivers and streams, 18% of impaired lakes, 55% of impaired ocean shorelines, and 32% of impaired estuaries according to EPA’s National Water Quality Inventory: 2000 Report.
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