What is Stormwater?
Increased impervious surface results in both an increased amount of stormwater runoff and an increased chance for pollution to enter our waterways through our storm sewer systems (throughout most of Geauga County these are ditches.). This type of pollution that results from stormwater runoff is called nonpoint source pollution.
The 2023 theme is Sensible Salting!
DID YOU KNOW?
- Girl Scouts, Gorillas, and Gadgets: Managing Resources Responsibly
- Our Endangered Evenings: Embracing the Dark to See the Light
- Make an Obligation to Crop Rotation
- Fresh Country Air with a Hint of Derriere: The Realities of Rural Living
- Seeing Wall Street in Your Woods: Invest & Protect Your Assets
- Consult and Respect Your Neighbors: Parting Wisdom from Technician Bob Griesmer
- When It Rains It Pours! Wrangling Your Water to Reduce Runoff
- Shake the Habit with These Winter Salting Tips!
- Recognize SepticSmart Week ~ September 17 - 21, 2018!
- Happy Birthday! Celebrating 50 Years of Ohio's Scenic Rivers
- The Ride is Smooth When You're Septic Smart
- Cleaner Water by the Boatload!
- A New Avenue for Clean Water Education
- National Groundwater Awareness Week Reminds Us To Be "WELL Educated"
- Manure Happens! Helping Horse Owners Manage Manure
- Still Standing! Celebrating our BIGGEST Trees
- Water, Water, Everywhere?
- There's No Match for a Native Plant Patch
- Turn Mowing Pains into Healthy Gains
- Keeping Your Yard Green and Our Water Clean
Other Regional Workshops, Partners, and Resources:
What is Nonpoint Source Pollution?Did you know that two-thirds of the nation’s polluted runoff comes from highways and roads (the same roads that run through our neighborhoods)? It is a shocking statistic, considering that a majority of the population believes that they do not have any affect on the pollution problem.
Let’s review for a minute: nonpoint source (NPS) pollution comes from many different sources over a large drainage area, or watershed. It is difficult to control because there are so many sources of the pollution in a given area. It is created when rainwater or melted snow moves over the land and through the ground, collecting impurities as it travels. This water (or stormwater runoff) deposits these pollutants into our water sources. View a brochure on NPS Pollution Around the Home that illustrates sources of pollutants and ways to reduce or eliminate.
What is a Watershed?No matter where you live, you’re in a watershed. A watershed is a geographic area that water flows across or under on its way to a stream, river, or lake. The boundaries of each watershed is determined by the landscape and the topography.
The landscape is made up of many interconnected basins, or watersheds. Within each watershed, all the water runs to the lowest point— a stream, lake, or river. On its way, water travels over the surface and across farm fields, forest land, suburban lawns, and city streets, or it seeps into the soil and travels as ground water. Learn more about Geauga County Watersheds by viewing this brochure.
Geauga County is rich in its natural resources, including rivers and streams. We are home to four major watersheds: the Chagrin River Basin, the Cuyahoga River Basin, the Grand River Basin, and the Mahoning River Basin. Geauga County itself is in the Lake Erie Watershed. This means that all of the water that flows in our streams will eventually drain into Lake Erie. The only exception to this is the Mahoning River Basin. The Mahoning River flows south to the Ohio River Watershed.
Storm Water Banners
This project is a watershed awareness and nonpoint source pollution education campaign targeting residents and homeowners in the Lake Erie Basin. Collaborators include the Soil and Water Conservation Districts in Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Medina, Portage, and Summit Counties, the City of Avon Lake, and the Black River Watershed Project -Lorain County Community Development Department.
Eight sets of six collapsible banner displays have been created to deliver a unified, regional message empowering residents to practice healthy household and backyard habits that improve water quality and reduce storm water pollution.
The banners cover five main storm water topics and are being showcased at events, workshops, and public locations in over 100 communities in Northeast Ohio. Please contact our office if you are interested in borrowing a banner. Banners are also displayed in this handy brochure Household Habits for Healthy Waters. Banner topics include: 1. Watersheds and The Rundown on Runoff, 2. Clean Storm Water Starts at Home, 3. Steer Clear of Pollutants, 4. Slow Down, Spread Out, and Soak In Storm Water, 5. It’s Not Hard to Have Healthy Yard
Alternative Storm Water Management Practices
What is Low Impact Development (LID)
LID designs with nature in mind by working with the natural landscape and existing hydrology to retain water where it falls rather than using traditional methods of funneling water via pipes and ditches directly into local waterways.
Types of LID PracticesRain Barrels - Rain from rooftop areas or paved areas can be diverted into a rain barrel rather than into a storm water system or into your yard. The collected rainwater can later be used to water lawns and gardens. These rain barrels can be painted and act also as yard art. Check out Geauga SWCD's annual yard art campaign and find out how you too can bid on one of these beautifully decorated barrels that are functional. Geauga SWCD also sells plain rain barrels year-round. Contact the office or check out the Other Services and Products tab above for more information.
Types of LID PracticesRain Gardens - Specially designed areas planted with native plants can provide natural places for rainwater to collect and soak into the ground. Rain from rooftop areas or paved areas can be diverted into these gardens rather than into storm drains, which drain directly to a ditch or a stream.
Types of LID PracticesRiparian Setbacks - Riparian setbacks are a zoning and planning tool that communities may use to maintain flood and erosion control, in addition to protecting water quality and property. They are similar to front and side yard setbacks as they control the location of construction and related soil disturbing activities.
Types of LID PracticesPermeable Pavement - Traditional concrete and asphalt don’t allow water to soak into the ground, rather they repel it. Permeable pavement systems allow rain and snowmelt to infiltrate into the underlying soils, which promotes recharge and treatment of pollution while decreasing storm water runoff.
Types of LID PracticesGreen Roofs - Are rooftop gardens. They reduce energy costs, lower the heat island effect, enhance air quality, and conserve valuable land that would otherwise be required for storm water runoff controls.
Types of LID PracticesConservation Development - Houses are carefully arranged and grouped within a development to maintain overall density requirements and to conserve a large area of open space which preserves the existing natural resources. Current zoning density for the whole is preserved, so if 25 lots were originally permitted the new plan still could only support 25 lots. The open space is often placed in an easement which is held by a third party in order to protect it in perpetuity.