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What Is Stormwater Runoff?

When it rains, water that does not soak into the ground becomes runoff. This runoff collects pollutants from our properties such as vehicle residues, lawn fertilizers, property remodeling, and pet feces, and drains into our stormwater system.

The polluted runoff is NOT treated after it goes into street drains and goes straight to our rivers and lakes, impacting our drinking water, swimming, fishing, and can turn our waters into a stinky, brown-green mess.

How Can We Keep Our Waters Healthier?

You can make a huge impact on local waters just by being aware of what’s coming off of their yard! The City of Cambridge encourages our community to help protect our waterways. View the categories below to learn what you can do in your home to make a difference:

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Managing Stormwater Runoff

The illustrations below show how construction and landscaping play a role in managing runoff.

Bad Runoff chart Runoff Prevention chart

Keep a Lookout for Illicit Discharge

Do you see something suspicious being sent down our storm drains? Nothing other than rain water should be going into City storm drains, anything else could be illicit discharge! Please report activity or call (763) 689-1800 if you see anyone dumping down drains, or if you see suspicious colors, smells, or materials getting into or coming out of drains!

For more information and common FAQs on Illicit Discharge, watch the video below.