Soil

America's number one source of water pollution comes from suspended solids like soil, silt and debris.

DO DON'T
Be on the lookout for soil, debris and chemicals leaving construction sites in stormwater runoff, and report poorly managed sites.
Sweep up dirt and soil.
Cover dirt stockpiles in your driveway or move the piles to non-paved areas if the weather forecast predicts rain.
Cover topsoil piles and mulch to prevent it from blowing or washing away.
Don't hose off pavement, which washes pollutants like dirt and soil into storm drains.
Don't make piles of sand or soil in areas where they are likely to be washed into storm drains.

Suspended Solids Effects (Soil, Silt, Debris)

  • Inhibits light from reaching aquatic plants, making it difficult for them to grow.
  • Can destroy underwater habitats.
  • Clogs gills and siphons of underwater animals.
  • Impedes fish migration.
  • Increases water temperature, which reduces the maximum quantity of dissolved oxygen for aquatic life.
  • Causes increases in spending on the storm sewer system when it is clogged with excessive amounts of dirt.