Help keep waterways clean


Five simple ways you can clean up our waterways

Keeping the stormwater drains free of pollutants and contaminants is everyone's responsibility. Washing your car in the driveway or rinsing paint brushes into stormwater drains can affect the quality of the natural water and harm plants and wildlife downstream.

Protecting waterways is in everyone’s interest, and everyone can do their bit to help. Here are five simple things you can do that will make a huge difference to the local environment.

1. Wash vehicles away from drains

Wash your vehicle on the grass or take it to a car wash at a service station that treats and disposes of its water. This will reduce the amount of contaminated water going into the storm drain (and can water your lawn at the same time!).

2. Scoop the poop – Pick up pet waste

Pet waste doesn’t disappear, usually it gets washed down the drain, and into our waterways, with the next rain. It also contains bacteria and disease-causing organisms that can infect people and other pets. Pick up your pet waste and throw it in the bin.

3. Don’t drip and drive - Fix car leaks

Regularly service your car. This stops leaking oil getting onto the road, then into the stormwater system. It only takes one litre of oil to contaminate a million litres of water.

4. Plant natives

Native plants have evolved to natural conditions and don’t need any extra fertilizers, watering, or chemicals. Native plants have extensive root systems that prevent erosion, provide extra filtration and improve water quality. By choosing native plants will also save you time and money by cutting costs related to mowing, fertilising, and watering your lawn.

5. Report dumping – Only rain down the drain

When using water-based paint, clean up over soil or grass. Don't hose household cleaners, paint, concrete cleaning or any other chemicals down the stormwater drain. Report dumping into storm drains or oil spills by calling the Council on 03 687 7200.

Last updated: 09 Mar 2022