September 2016 News Archive

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Reminder to residents: only rain in the storm drain

September 27, 2016 9:47 AM
(Red Deer, Alberta)

As residents clean up their yards this fall, they’re reminded that what goes on their lawns – or spills off them – will end up in the Red Deer River, untreated.

The City is reminding residents that anything other than rain or melted snow that enters a storm drain (also called a catch basin) can pollute our watershed, harm aquatic habitat, create a potential public health concern or generate unpleasant odours.

“Many people don’t realize that the actions they take to care for their yards can affect our river,” said Katina Tam, Environmental Program Specialist with The City of Red Deer. “We hope they make the connection and make some small changes to improve the health of our watershed.”

Residents can play their part in protecting the environment by:

  • Preventing leaves and grass clippings from entering storm drains. While it’s good to leave grass clippings on your lawn, anything that spills off onto sidewalks or driveways should be swept back onto the lawn.
  • Cleaning up yard and pet waste. Fallen leaves should be placed in a paper yard waste bag or bin labelled with a yard waste sticker so material can be composted at the Waste Management Facility. Yard waste in plastic bags will be considered garbage.
  • Avoiding pesticide and herbicide use and by using lawn and garden fertilizers sparingly. Consider using organic fertilizers or more environmentally friendly methods for caring for your lawn. Ensure you sweep any fertilizer that spills onto the sidewalks back onto the lawn.

When rain and snow melt flows into the storm drain it is collected into a storm sewer designed to help drain stormwater away from homes, buildings and off the roads. The water collected in the stormwater system empties into neighbourhood stormwater ponds or directly into the Red Deer River, without any treatment from the Wastewater Treatment Plant.

Learn more at

­For more information, please contact:

Geoff Stewardson
Wastewater Superintendent
The City of Red Deer

Communications & Strategic Planning
The City of Red Deer

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