Floodplain | Stormwater Management | Drainage Utility
Pollution Prevention | Stormwater for Kids
The City of Round Rock works to prevent pollution of our creeks and rivers from stormwater and urban runoff through education and management.
What is stormwater runoff?
Stormwater runoff is water that flows after a rainfall. During rainstorms, water drains off driveways, parking lots and streets picking up pollutants while flowing to the storm sewer system. Once stormwater enters the storm sewer system of inlets, pipes or channels, it flows downstream to the nearest creek, lake or river.
What is urban runoff?
Urban runoff also flows to the storm sewer system. Urban runoff is water from irrigation, overwatering, car washing and other sources that travel into the street picking up pollutants.
What is the difference between the storm sewer system and sanitary sewer system?
The water that goes down the sanitary sewer system (from sinks or toilets) flows to a wastewater treatment plant where it is treated and filtered prior to entering any water bodies.
The stormwater and urban runoff water that flows down driveways and streets and into the storm sewer system flows directly to our creeks, lakes and rivers. Anything that enters a storm sewer system is discharged untreated into the water bodies we use for swimming, fishing and providing drinking water.
The effects of pollution
Polluted storm water runoff can have many adverse effects on plants, fish, animals and people.
Sediment can cloud the water and make it difficult or impossible for aquatic plants to grow.
Sediment also can destroy aquatic habitat. Bacteria and other pathogens can wash into swimming areas and create health hazards.
Excess nutrients can cause algae blooms. When algae die, they sink to the bottom and decompose in a process that removes oxygen from the water. Fish and other aquatic organisms can’t exist in water with low dissolved oxygen levels.
Household hazardous wastes like insecticides, pesticides, paint, solvents, grease, used motor oil and other auto fluids can poison aquatic life. Land animals and people can become sick or die from eating diseased fish or ingesting polluted water.
Debris—plastic bags, six-pack rings, bottles and cigarette butts—washed into creeks and water bodies can choke, suffocate, or disable aquatic life like ducks, fish, turtles and birds.
Polluted storm water often affects drinking water sources. This, in turn, can affect human health and increase drinking water treatment costs.
What can you do to help?
For more information or to inquire about volunteer opportunities call (512) 218-7046 or e-mail Stormwater Program. To report illegal dumping into our storm drains or waterways, contact the City at (512) 218-7046. The largest source of storm water pollution are pollutants such as litter, pet waste, pesticides, fertilizers, leaves and yard clippings and automotive leaks and spills. These materials are swept away with the storm water and produce what is referred to as non-point source pollution. Harmful bacteria, chemicals, sediment and litter enters or blocks the storm drain and leads to flooding, impaired water quality and endangers the health and habitat of local wildlife. Pollution Prevention Information