The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) created the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) with the introduction of the Clean Water Act in 1972. In 1990 the NPDES stormwater regulations were published. Stormwater is defined as water from weather events that flow over streets, parking lots, rooftops and other impervious surfaces to a stormwater system and eventually to streams, rivers, lakes and coastal waters. NPDES regulations require jurisdictions to control pollution in stormwater to the maximum extent practicable (MEP). NPDES permits are intended to protect water quality and people’s health by controlling pollution into US waterways. Improvement of stormwater quality is established through the implementation of six minimum control measures or MCM’s.
- Public education and outreach
- Public involvement and participation
- Illicit discharge detection and elimination
- Construction site stormwater runoff control
- Post-construction stormwater management
- Pollution prevention and good housekeeping
The EPA lists the benefits of effective stormwater runoff management can include:
- Protection of wetlands and aquatic ecosystems,
- Improved quality of receiving waterbodies,
- Conservation of water resources,
- Protection of public health, and
- Flood control
An illicit discharge is the improper disposal of materials into the Stormwater management system. Report all spills or suspected illicit discharges to storm drains or other system components immediately. Contact the University Police at 410-455-5555 to report all spills and suspected discharges. Information of where, when and what you witnessed will be helpful to tracking the illicit discharge and minimizing the effects.
University employees, students, contractors and visitors are not to discharge any contaminants into the stormwater system.
Illicit Discharge and Spill Hotline (Available 24/7)
Report all Spills and Suspected Illicit Discharges immediately to Campus Police at 410-455-5555.
What you can do to help stormwater quality
Never dump anything into storm drains.
Ensure vehicle maintenance is maintained to limit fluid leaks.
Do not litter. Dispose of trash in proper receptacles.
Pick up after your pets.
Alert Campus police if spills or dumping into the stormwater system is witnessed.
Participate in campus events that promote environmental stewardship and education, including stream cleanups, tree plantings, forest conservation, and similar campus initiatives.