Clean Water Program

1. About the Clean Water Program 

The discharge of pollutants to the storm drain system is the leading source of water pollution in local creeks and San Francisco Bay. To maintain the health of the Bay, federal and state laws require Bay Area cities to reduce pollution, Alameda Municipal Code, Chapter 18, Article 3, prohibits the discharge of pollutants and littering and requires businesses and facilities to implement best management practices to not cause or contribute to storm water pollution.

Through the implementation of its Clean Water Program, the City is committed to performing necessary services and providing residents and businesses with practical solutions to help reduce pollution. We need everyone's help. If you see a spill or illegal dumping, report it!

The Clean Water Program uses a multi-faceted approach to prevent stormwater pollution. Program elements include:
  • Street Sweeping
  • Public Outreach and Education
  • New Development Design Review
  • Industrial and Commercial Facility Inspections
  • Construction Site Inspections
  • Illicit Discharge Inspections and Response/Enforcement
  • Heavy Metals and Legacy Pollutant Controls
  • Storm Drain System Cleaning and Maintenance
  • Storm Drain System Improvements and Upgrades (e.g. pump stations, storm mains)
  • Participation in the Alameda County Clean Water Program
  • Contributions to a Regional Water Quality Monitoring Program
Anything other that rainwater that enters storm drains may be harmful to people and the environment.

So remember: only rain down the storm drain!

2. Clean Water Compliance

We are required to implement its Clean Water Program as a condition of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit for the City’s storm drain system. The conditions of this permit direct municipal compliance with the Federal Clean Water Act to protect the quality of local stormwater runoff. The City implements the permit requirements with all other Alameda County local agencies as a co-permittee in the Alameda County Clean Water Program.

3. Pollution Prevention

Stormwater pollution is water runoff that becomes polluted as it runs over land. It's harmful to fish, wildlife, and human health. It can lead to loss of recreational uses and loss of biological and aesthetic value.
Pollution occurs when water from rainfall, garden hoses and sprinklers picks up oils, litter, pesticides and other substances from city streets, gutters and sidewalks. The contaminated water enters the storm drain system, and from there, is carried untreated to the Bay and Estuary.

Many stormwater pollutants are invisible. But, if you see an oily sheen or turbidity on water flowing off paved surfaces, you've have seen an example of stormwater pollution.

4. Clean Water Resources

Trash Load Reduction Plan


5. Storm Drain Maps

Maps of the City of Alameda’s storm drain system are available for viewing at the front desk of the Public Works Department.

Hours of Operation
Monday – Thursday, 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
950 West Mall Square, Room 110
Alameda, CA 94501
The City charges a standard fee of $93/hour after the first 15 minutes of help. The following standard copying fees apply:
Size:     18 x 22 (full map size)    $20 per copy
Size:     22 x 30 (other maps)      $26 per copy
Size:     11 x 17 (reduced size)    10 cents per copy


6. Volunteer Opportunities

Have you ever seen "No Dumping, Drains to Bay" painted above a storm drain? By simply painting this message above a storm drain, you will have a unique opportunity to educate our community about protecting the Bay. 

You pick the location in the City, and we will provide all of the stenciling equipment and guidance you will need. 

Contact the City of Alameda Clean Water Program at (510) 747-7900 for more information.