photo courtesy of Minnesota Pollution Control Agency

Fall 2019 Newsletter: Adopt a Storm Drain

The opportunity to create cleaner waterways is just down the street—at your nearest storm drain.

“Natural” Debris is Pollution

Storm drains are built to carry away excess water in times of heavy rain. They flow directly into local lakes, rivers, and wetlands. While everyone knows that trash is no good for lakes and rivers, many people aren’t aware that “natural” debris—leaves, grass clippings, and pet waste—are all pollution when they enter our water resources. When washed into the drain system, this debris decays in our waterways, and releases nutrients that feed algae and weeds. It also carries with it road salt and fertilizers, which pollute our waters.

What You Can Do This Fall

Adopt-a-drain programs encourage volunteers to clear storm drains and document what they find. provides an interactive map so you can find and claim the storm drain closest to you. The organization will send you tips on how to clean up safely.

Sweep up, rake up, pick up!