Hot Topics - Stormwater Impacts 

May 2018

Invasive species aren't the only threat to the integrity of our lake. Pollution doesn't just impact the air quality. Stormwater runoff and the pollutants it carries away, is a main contributor to the quality of our lakes, streams and their ecosystems. The City of Waconia continually evaluates and maintains the stormwater conveyance infrastructure to ensure we have the best practices in place. While we are doing our part to keep our lakes and streams clean to maintain a healthy water ecosystem for fishing and recreation,  there are things you can do at home that make a big difference!  Regardless of where you live within the community, water runoff from your residence eventually transfers into one of our many lakes, ponds and streams and makes an impact on the water system.

What you can do?

  • If you fertilize, keep it on your lawn

    . Sweep up any fertilizer that lands on a hard surface. When irrigating, avoid letting water run into the street.
  • Keep storm drains clear.

    Keep leaves, grass clippings, and other yard waste out of the street.
  • Clean up.

    Dispose of split items (fertilizer, motor oil, paint) properly. Spraying them down with a hose can wash them into the storm drain. Pick up pet waste and throw it in the trash.
  • Minimize ice-melt chemicals

    . Reduce the amount of salt you use in winter and only use it when the air temperature is over 15 degrees.
  • Plant a rain garden

    . Rain gardens collect and filter stormwater naturally. 

Did you know?

  • The City currently has projects in place to use harvested water from stormwater run-off for irrigation!
  • Decomposed pet waste releases harmful bacteria, parasites, and nutrients (E. Coli, Salmonella, giardia, and phosphorus)?
  • A twelve ounce coffee mug of de-icing salt can cover 250 square feet!
  • Mowing your lawn three inches or higher will help it be resistant to weeds, retain moisture longer (less water equals a lower water bill!) and will assist in trapping pollutants.
  • There is a statewide law prohibiting the use of fertilizers containing phosphorus on establishes turf. This is due to the concern of excessive amounts of phosphorus found in our lakes. Check the bag to ensure yours is compliant!
  • The ponds throughout the community are not just meant to be a water feature for landscaping and aesthetics. They are part of the City's stormwater infrastructure. These basins are designed to prevent flooding and filter run off. Pollutants and nutrients entering the pond through stormwater runoff can cause large amounts of algae growth. 

Check back monthly for a new hot topic and click here to see articles from previous months!