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Help Keep Our Bay Clean

Post Date:12/26/2016 12:54 PM

Protecting our water resources is everyone's responsibility. Each day, a variety of toxic pollutants are washed from streets and parking lots into storm drains. The storm drains prevent flooding by sending this run-off to local creeks, but this water is NOT treated, and pollutants ultimately reach the Bay.

To help prevent sending more pollutants to the Bay, consider installing rain collection barrels at the end of your gutter spouts. Your rain barrel could help protect local creeks and the Bay by reducing urban run-off that transports litter, motor oil, metals and other pollutants into storm drains. As an added benefit, collected water can be used to water landscaping around your house during dry days.

If you’re interested in installing a rain barrel, the City, in coordination with San Mateo County, will provide you with a rebate of up to $100 per rain barrel (max purchase of two rain barrels). To learn more, please visit:

Another way you can help keep our Bay clean is to keep litter and other pollutants from entering storm drains in the first place. Around the house, properly clean-up and dispose of paint, motor oil, and other toxic chemicals. If you’re at work or running errands, hold on to and recycle empty beverage containers, and throw used snack food wrappers in a trash bin. If you smoke, put your cigarette butt in a trash can instead of throwing it in the street.

The San Mateo County Environmental Health Department sponsors a FREE county-wide program to collect, recycle and properly dispose of household hazardous waste. To learn more, please visit:

To learn more about other pollution prevention tips, please sign-up for the Flows to Bay Water Pollution Prevention e-newsletter at By working together we can keep our water ways and the Bay clean. 

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