Best Management Practices

Did you know that while older sewers cary stormwater with sewage to a treatment plant, many suburban sewers drain stormwater right into the environment without treatment?  The University of Virginia has worked for more than a decade on stormwater management on grounds. The goals are to redirect stormwater runoff from the sewer systems, allow it to infiltrate into the subsurface, and inform students, faculty, and staff on the practices that can help keep our water clean.

Painting Beta Bridge

Photo Credits go to squidthompson's Beta Bridge (Almost) Daily blog

“It was actually running down the street — I could see the paint color being carried off in the water trail that led to the storm drain and then yes, eventually the Chesapeake Bay watershed.” -squidthompson

  • Only buy the amount of paint that you need, and keep any extra paint for next time.
  • Use non-toxic, outdoor paints
  • Don’t wash paint brushes/rollers/containers on-site. Instead, take them home to wash in a sink that drains into sanitary sewer systems, which are directed to treatment plants.
  • Try to minimize dripping and spilling, and clean up if there are any spills.
  • Let paint on containers dry before disposing (oil based paints and aerosol cans are hazardous waste, don’t put them in trash cans).
  • Don’t leave anything behind (if you’re leaving markers for people to write messages, make sure there’s a set time that someone will come back and collect materials).
  • Pay attention to the weather forecast – don’t paint on a day that it’s going to rain! Paints usually take an hour or two to dry but 24 hours for it to be cured enough to be safe from rain.

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