Water Quality Monitoring
ENVIRONMENTAL – STORMWATER
What is Stormwater?
Stormwater, or urban runoff, is the rain water and waste water that flows over driveways, lawns, sidewalks, and streets. As this water flows over these surfaces it picks up debris, chemicals, fertilizers, auto fluids, and other pollutants before entering into the stormwater system. Our stormwater system is designed to drain the city of rainwater during weather events and to help minimize flooding. The stormwater system carries the runoff through a system of interconnected pipes before depositing the runoff into Biscayne Bay and the surrounding the waterways.
Stormwater Pollution Solutions
By practicing healthy household habits, homeowners can keep common pollutants like pesticides, pet waste, grass clippings, and automotive fluids off the ground and out of stormwater. Help protect our coastal waters!
Make your residence the Solution to Stormwater Pollution. Click here to find out more!
The City of Miami Beach is a barrier island surrounded by Biscayne Bay, the Atlantic Ocean, and an interconnected system of waterways that provide habitat for fish and wildlife, opportunities for recreation, and an enhanced quality of life. As such, we implement a multi-faceted strategy to limit pollution from entering our waterways and impacting water quality. Our stormwater management program is structured on the requirements set forth by the Clean Water Act of 1972 and regulated through the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permitting program. The NPDES permit allows for municipal stormwater discharges as long as they meet water quality standards and implement Best Management Practices (BMPs) that reduce pollutants to the “Maximum Extent Practicable”. We are one of 30+ co-permittees under Miami-Dade County’s Municipal Separate Storm Sewer (MS4) NPDES permit.
While we share one NPDES permit with other communities within Biscayne Bay watershed, each co-permittee is required to develop and employ their own tailored stormwater management program to ensure their respective compliance with the provisions of our NPDES permit. The BMPs we implement in Miami Beach include education and outreach, good housekeeping,
water quality monitoring, as well as the use of cutting edge equipment and industry-vetted operational practices. Together these elements reduce the pollutants that can be picked up by stormwater throughout our city and trap and remove a large percentage of those pollutants within our stormwater system. Also, each co-permittee is required to submit an NPDES Annual Report detailing the activities conducted under their stormwater management program, their anticipated success at preventing stormwater pollution, and justifying any decreases in stormwater pollution prevention efforts. In the State of Florida, this report is submitted to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) as this agency has delegated authority from the EPA to implement the program on their behalf.
We submitted our last NPDES Annual Report in December 2016. This report, which is still under review by FDEP, covered the timeframe between June 2015 and June 2016 and included the following stormwater management milestones:
• Increasing the stormwater system cleaning frequency from every three years to annually, with pump stations being cleaned quarterly;
• Increasing the frequency of waterway cleaning from two to three times weekly;
• 100+ education and outreach events;
• 46,000 lbs of debris removed from our waterways;
• 2.5 million lbs of street sweepings removed from our roadways;
• 17.8 million lbs of litter removed by litter crews from our roadways;
• Over 1500 Styrofoam coolers swapped and removed from our beaches;
• Over 150 storm drain catch basin markers installed by volunteers; and,
• Three times more household hazardous waste collected from our residents for proper disposal.
The previous NPDES Annual Reports have completed their review and are available below.
If you have any questions, please call us at 305.673.7010 or email us at:
Betsy Wheaton, Environment and Sustainability Director
Margarita Wells, Environmental Resources Manager
- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA): http://cfpub.epa.gov/npdes/
- Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP): http://www.dep.state.fl.us/water/stormwater/npdes/
- Miami-Dade County Department of Environmental Resources Management (DERM): http://www.miamidade.gov/derm/pollution_stormwater.asp