Municipal Stormwater Permit
NPDES Permit Background
On behalf of the community, the City of Eugene manages the municipal stormwater system which is the publicly owned system of gutters, curb inlets, manholes, stormwater treatment facilities (rain gardens, swales), pipes, and ditches that ultimately discharge to receiving waterbodies including Amazon Creek and the Willamette River. Like many other cities and counties in the United States, Eugene is required under the federal Clean Water Act to obtain a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit for discharging stormwater runoff from the municipal stormwater system into the nation’s rivers and streams. The permit, administered by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality(DEQ), is aimed at protecting and improving water quality and requires implementation of a broad range of stormwater pollution reduction measures as documented in a Stormwater Management Program Document. The permit also requires water quality monitoring as documented in a Monitoring Plan.
The City has been implementing stormwater pollution reduction measures since its first NPDES permit was issued in 1994. The permit has been re-issued three times since then: in 2004, 2010, and most recently September 2021. With each iteration of the permit, and at certain times between the issuance of permits, an updated Stormwater Management Program Document and Monitoring Plan are required to ensure continued compliance with changing regulations and to reflect improved program effectiveness through adaptive management.
Stormwater Management Program Document
The current Stormwater Management Program Document (referred to as the "SWMP") is a written summary of the comprehensive set of 22 best management practices the City is implementing each day to meet the current NPDES permit and reduce stormwater pollution to the maximum extent practicable. Best management practices include: performing maintenance of the system of publicly-owned pipes, ditches, bioswales, rain gardens, and open waterways, street sweeping, seasonal leaf pick-up, winter road sanding and de-icing, erosion prevention for construction sites, water quality standards for new development and redevelopment, stormwater management for commercial and industrial sites, spill response, addressing illicit discharges and activities, stormwater education and outreach, volunteer activities, tree planting, and stormwater capital improvement projects.
Stormwater Monitoring Plan
The current Stormwater Monitoring Plan describes the City’s monitoring objectives, strategies, sampling locations, pollutant parameters, and monitoring procedures and protocols.
The City completes an annual report and submits it by December 1 each year to DEQ. The reports cover the period of time from July 1 through June 30 of the following year and include information on stormwater program activities and analysis of Eugene's water quality monitoring results.
Annual reports, from the 2014 Report up to the most recently completed 2022 Report are available below. Earlier reports are available upon request. Please direct any questions or comments about Eugene's reports via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone: 541-682-5549.
Analysis of water quality data from samples taken from Amazon Creek and the Willamette River indicates some water quality improvement over time. The City has analyzed samples taken from these and other local waterways for over 20 years and data show decreasing pollutant trends for certain metals, nutrients, bacteria and turbidity. These trends toward water quality improvement indicate that the City’s stormwater program and community efforts are having a positive impact.
Certain pollutants continue to be problematic in Eugene’s streams, however, including bacteria and zinc. Sources of bacteria in urban areas include pet waste, so it is important to pick up after pets and dispose of animal waste properly. Zinc, which can be toxic to aquatic life at low levels, is commonly found in moss control products, galvanized metal roofing materials, and even in car tires as they degrade over time. For tips on what we can all do to reduce and prevent these pollutants from getting into the stormwater system and local rivers and streams, please see happyrivers.org.
Stormwater Underground Injection Control (UIC) Reports
Note: Prior years' UIC reports are available upon request to PWE