Storm water runoff transports many pollutants from parking lots, construction sites, and farm fields directly to our creeks and lake. The issue of urban area storm drains and storm water pollution is being addressed by the Muskegon County Area Storm Water Committee (MCASWC). Many of the communities in the watershed are required under federal law by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to meet Phase II storm water requirements and that is why the MCASWC formed. They contracted with Fishbeck, Thompson, Carr, and Huber (FTC&H) to inventory storm drains in their Phase II area and to develop illicit discharge and connection ordinances. By definition, an illicit discharge is the introduction (intentionally or unintentionally, and directly or indirectly) of any liquid, substance, pollutant, or other material into a storm water drainage system or water body (FTC&H 2003). The photos below show some storm drain issues in the Mona Lake Watershed.
Ordinances were adopted by each city or township in November, 2005 to help reduce storm water discharges to storm drains. Pollutants associated with storm water discharges include fecal coliform bacteria, heavy metals, sediments, nutrients, PAH, PCBs, and oil and grease. The MCASWC is developing a Public Education Plan and is working with the Muskegon Conservation District to educate the public about storm water runoff and how it can help reduce pollutants in runoff.
Projects addressing storm water management were proposed in the Mona Lake Watershed Plan's implementation projects.
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