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Stormwater Management

The Canton Stormwater Management Program (SMP) seeks to protect properties and aquatic resources from damages caused by increased volume, frequency and peak rate of stormwater runoff. Further, the program seeks to protect those resources from increased nonpoint source pollution carried by stormwater runoff.

Quantity of Stormwater Runoff - Pervious surfaces, such as meadows and woodlands, absorb and infiltrate rainfall hence generate little runoff. Urban landscape typically covers such areas with impervious surfaces, such as pavement and rooftops. These impervious surfaces generate runoff every time it rains. (A typical city block generates nine times more runoff than a woodland area of the same size!) The quantity of runoff from these areas quickly overwhelms natural channels and streams, often causing channel erosion, localized flooding and property damage.

Quality of Stormwater Runoff - The pervious and impervious surfaces in the urbanizing landscape collect pollutants such as automobile oil, grease, brake pad dust, sediment from construction sites, bacteria from animal waste, excess lawn care fertilizers and pesticides, as well as atmospheric deposition of phosphorus, nitrogen and other airborne pollutants. Rainfall washes these surfaces so that the initial flush of runoff can carry high concentrations of these pollutants to nearby drinking water supplies, waterways, beaches and properties. Pollution washed from the land surface by rainfall is called nonpoint source pollution.

Program Overview

SWM programs are implemented according to State Statutes. These statutes specifically set forth regulations regarding land development activities to prevent water pollution, stream channel erosion, depletion of groundwater resources, and more frequent localized flooding to protect property value and natural resources. SWM programs operated according to the law are intended to address these adverse impacts and comprehensively manage the quality and quantity of stormwater runoff on a watershed-wide basis.

For more information, please click here to see the City of Canton Storm Water Management Manual.

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