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Working to improve and protect water quality

Due to sheer volume of rooftops and parking lots, businesses and industries in Iowa generate a tremendous amount of stormwater runoff.


Regulated activities

Some industrial and commercial activities are classified as having “storm water discharge associated with industrial activity” are required to obtain NPDES permit coverage from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.  Most industrial activities covered under General Permit no. 1 or individual permits include, but are not limited to, material handling equipment or activities, industrial machinery, raw materials, intermediate products, by-products, final products, or waste products. Material handling activities include the storage, loading and unloading, transportation, or conveyance of any raw material, intermediate product, final product or waste product.  Facilities such as asphalt plants, concrete batch plants, quarries, sand and gravel pits and rock crushers are covered under General Permit no. 3.


Voluntary actions

Having a permit or not shouldn’t stop you from employing Best Management Practices in and around your business to improve and protect water quality.  Like households in Iowa there are BMPs suitable in business that prevent pollution, reduce stormwater runoff and manage what can’t be infiltrated.  Take the lead, walk the walk, tell us what you’ve done and we’ll let others know what you are doing to better water in Iowa.


Clean Water BMP Menu

Prevent pollution from being released in the first place.  When you take a minute to think about it, preventing stormwater pollution is directly connected to chores we do related to the upkeep and care of your business.  

Reduce what you can.  You should understand now that stormwater runoff is generated by rainwater hitting impervious surfaces, such as rooftops, driveways, streets and parking lots.  Making every attempt to prevent pollution, now try your hand at reducing stormwater runoff making its way to the closest storm drain.  

Manage what you can’t reduce.  In most cases, infiltration based practices are sized to capture and infiltrate the 1.25″ rain or less.  However, sometimes it rains more than that in a 24 hour period.  That means these infiltration practces should have a backup plan to safely release the excess rainwater that flows through the BMP.