Stormwater Runoff: The Problem

The salt pond20150708_124933s, estuaries and freshwater ponds and waterways of Cape Cod face a
growing threat from pollutants carried in stormwater runoff. Stormwater runoff is produced when the water from rain, snowmelt, or irrigation flows over the ground surface directly into ponds, lakes, streams, bays, or other water bodies, or into a storm drain system which then channels it to water bodies. REMEMBER: storm drains here in Falmouth flow directly to our ponds and estuaries. Never pour anything down a storm drain.

As stormwater moves over impermeable surfaces such as streets and driveways, it picks up pollutants like oil,  garbage, pesticides, detergents, whenrainsitdrainsEPAfertilizers, and pet and yard waste and carries them, untreated, to local water bodies. These pollutants can kill aquatic plants and animals both directly and indirectly, make our waters smelly, unattractive to look at, and unsafe to swim in, and pose threats to the health of all those who live in, use and rely on them.

The Keep It Blue Initiative

keepitblueIn an effort to raise awareness about this problem and its solutions, Falmouth Water Stewards, in cooperation with AmeriCorps Cape Cod and the Falmouth Department of Public Works with generous funding from the Cape Cod Five Cents Savings Bank Charitable Foundation Trust and the Sounds Conservancy of the Quebec-Labrador Foundation   developed the Keep It Blue Initiative.  The Initiative consists of posters which are posted at beaches and ponds around Falmouth, a brochure which will be in every spring 2015 water bill, and other educational materials, all designed to inspire citizens to take personal action to reduce stormwater pollution.  We are working on a PSA to show on FCTV, on our website, and the schools that illustrates how each of us can take responsibility for helping to keep our waters blue through the choices we make every day. We also give talks by request to local organizations about the current state of our waters and how we can protect and restore them.


 What You Can Do To Keep It BLUE

To report a problem with a catch basin or storm drain, call the Town Highway Department at (508) 457-2543. 

The good news is that each one of us can make choices every day in and around our homes and yards that lessen our contributions to stormwater pollution, reducing the amount of sewering and other technologies we must pay for to reach water quality standards, and helping to keep our waters healthy and blue. Here are ten simple things you can do to keep it blue.




To our members and to the  Cape Cod Five Cents Savings Bank Charitable Foundation Trust and the Sounds Conservancy of the Quebec-Labrador Foundation   for providing the funds for development of the Keep It Blue materials.