Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination

The EPA defines an illicit discharge as, “any discharge into a storm drain system that is not composed entirely of stormwater.” This means anything other than the water that falls from the sky. The most prevalent kinds of discharge are pouring or washing wastes into stormwater conveyances and leaking sewer lines. Pollutants frequently included in illicit discharges include: hazardous household products like paint, yard care products including pesticides and fertilizers, pet waste, automotive fluids, car wash detergents and sewage. 

Figure 10 Carrboro’s Stormwater Hotline


To identify, confirm and manage illicit discharges, the Town:

●        Maintains a mapped inventory of the Town’s stormwater conveyance system.

●        Enforces an ordinance prohibiting non-stormwater discharges into the stormwater conveyance and streams (Town Code Sections 5-32 and 5-33, see Appendix 3).

●        Conducts stream walks and outfall inspections to look for discharges.

●        Delivers educational outreach for staff and the public on illegal discharges and improper disposal of waste.

●        Staffs a hotline for reporting Stormwater violations and issues (Figure 10).

Please be cautious about what washes off your property and call the local stormwater hotline if you see or suspect illicit discharges in your area. They are illegal and can directly affect you and others. 

For more information, please contact us (see Appendix 1).