what is an illicit discharge?
Do you know what an illicit discharge is? An illicit discharge is any discharge into the stormwater system that is not composed entirely of rain water or groundwater. Examples include dumping of motor fluids, household hazardous wastes, grass clippings, leaf litter, industrial waste, restaurant wastes, or any other non-stormwater waste. An illicit connection is the discharge of pollutants or non-stormwater material into a stormwater system via a pipe or other direct connection. Sources of illicit connections may include sanitary sewer taps, wash water for laundromats or carwashes, and other similar sources.
How do you identify an illicit discharge or connection? You should look for makeshift pipes or hoses that lead to a storm drain or body of water. Remember to watch for stains, unusual odors, structural damage to streets or gutters, and abnormal vegetative growth in nearby lakes and streams.
What do you do if you see an illicit discharge or connection? REPORT IT to your local city or county municipality. Most Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) communities have programs in place that detect, eliminate, and prevent illicit discharges to the stormwater system. As a citizen of Duluth, business person, or general user of our facilities, you are encouraged to report any problems you see or experience with stormwater related assets to our Stormwater Department at 770.497.5311. We appreciate your efforts to help keep Duluth a great place to live, work, and play!