Storm Water Terms N - P

  • National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES)
    The national program for issuing, modifying, revoking and reissuing, terminating, monitoring and enforcing permits, and imposing and enforcing pretreatment requirements, under sections 307, 402, 318, and 405 of the federal Clean Water Act.

    This is the Federal Regulation that the Storm Water Program is designed to comply with. Texas, as well as many other states, has been given authority from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for where the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) to monitor compliance through the Texas Pollutant Discharge Elimination Systems (TPDES). This lessens the burden on the EPA, and places more responsibility on the State agency, which in turn requires local governments to create programs, like the one at Denton County, to ensure the most appropriate Best Management Practices (BMPs) are being used.
  • Non-point source pollution
    Any source of any discharge of a pollutant that is not a "point source."

    This is pollution of water as the water flows over the surface of the earth. This includes anything that water flowing over the surface can pick up and carry with it on its way to our lakes can become non-point sources of pollution, such as:
    • Construction debris
    • Improper outdoor chemical storage
    • Lawn chemicals
    • Sediments
    • Soaps

      Non-point source pollution is difficult to manage, because it is often hard to determine the location where the pollution is taking place.
  • Point source pollution
    Any discernible, confined, and discrete conveyance, including but not limited to, any source from which pollutants are or may be discharged, such as:
    • Channel
    • Concentrated animal feeding operation
    • Conduit
    • Container
    • Discrete fissure
    • Ditch
    • Landfill leachate collection system
    • Pipe
    • Rolling stock
    • Tunnel
    • Vessel or other floating craft
    • Well

      This term does not include return flows from irrigated agriculture or agricultural storm water runoff.

      This is the typical kind of pollution most people are familiar with. However, more stringent regulations have brought decreases in this type of pollution. While these sources of pollution have not been eliminated, they are not as prevalent as they once were.
  • Pollutant
    • Biological materials
    • Cellar dirt
    • Chemical wastes
    • Dredged spoil
    • Filter backwash
    • Garbage
    • Heat
    • Incinerator residue
    • Munitions
    • Radioactive materials
    • Rock
    • Sand
    • Sewage
    • Sewage sludge
    • Solid waste
    • Toxic materials
    • Waste discharged into water or into the municipal separate storm sewer system including:
      • Agricultural
      • Industrial
      • Municipal
      • Recreational
    • Wrecked or discarded equipment

      A pollutant can be any number of things. While many people think of different chemicals as pollutants, anything that added to the water that causes a change in temperature (up or down), or increases the turbidity (cloudiness), is a pollutant as well. When talking about pollutants, it is always good to remember that a pollutant does not stay where it was released. Rather in the water or in the air, it will move, often to locations many miles away from where it was released.
  • Pollution
    The alteration of the physical, thermal, chemical, or biological quality of, or the contamination of, any Water of the State or Water of the United States, that renders the water harmful, detrimental, or injurious to humans, animal life, vegetation, or property, or to the public health, safety, or welfare, or impairs the usefulness or the public enjoyment of the water for any lawful or reasonable purpose.

    This is the effect on the water of the pollutant. Different types of pollution have different solutions. The best solution of all is prevention!! Trying to fix something after it is broken is always more difficult than preventing the wreck.