Consider incorporating stormwater best management practices (BMPs) into your daily life. With both structural and behavioral BMPs to choose from, there is never a shortage of opportunities to be a watershed hero!
Structural BMPs are landscape-level features installed to help water slow down and soak into the ground; these features help to reduce community flooding and prevent pollution from heading downstream. Some BMPs, typically commercial or community-scale, are complex and require the assistance of a professional to design. And some BMPs are applicable for residential-scale settings, in your yard, schoolyard or community center. Below is information to help you inspire your neighbors and get started on your BMP project today!
- Stormwater Pond Management
- Downspout Disconnection
- Tree Plantings
- Rain Gardens
- Rain Barrels and Cisterns
- Permeable Pavement
- Tidal Creek Buffers
- Native Plant Landscaping
Behavioral BMPs play a huge role in protecting downstream water quality. Even small actions taken by individuals can add up to make a positive impact across your community. Some key steps include the following:
- Certify your yard as a Carolina Yard! This Clemson Extension program guides residents in creating an aesthetically pleasing landscape that works with nature, not against it.
- Keep dumpster and garbage can lids closed and secure.
- Keep fats, oil, and grease out of your sink—store them in a can instead and dispose of in the trash. Find out more HERE.
- Wash your car at a commercial car wash where the wash-water is treated, or if washing at home, park your car on the grass so wash-water will soak into the ground.
- Install a rain barrel.
- Don’t guess soil test. Your local Clemson Extension office can help with your soil testing needs. Soil testing is an important first step before applying fertilizer to lawn and garden.
- Pick up after pets when on walks and in your backyard.
- Consider incorporating native plants into your landscaping decisions, native plants typically require little to no fertilizer or irrigation once established.
- Reduce the use of single use plastic. Some simple ways include using a reusable shopping bag when going to the store, using a refillable water bottle and when possible, skip the straw.
- Always maintain septic tank systems and assure are functioning as intended.
- Only rain down the drain! Avoid dumping anything down the storm drain that does not belong there such as yard debris and paint washing.