Volunteers Make a Difference with Storm Water Quality

This October, the Department of Facility Maintenance (DFM) Storm Water Quality (SWQ) Division celebrated Make a Difference Month with educational activities for keiki, cleanups throughout O‘ahu, a virtual Imagine a Day Without Water event, and the launch of its new storm drain marking map.

Nearly 500 volunteers worked across O‘ahu throughout October to mark over 400 storm drains with a “No Dumping, Drains to Ocean” message and remove more than 13 tons of trash and 3 tons of other debris from 19 clean up areas.

“I am very grateful to the hundreds of volunteers that came out and to the SWQ staff that coordinated these events to help make a difference in water quality for the island of O‘ahu,” said Director and Chief Engineer Roger Babcock, Jr., DFM. “Continued community engagement, education, and volunteerism are essential components of DFM’s efforts to sustainably manage Honolulu’s waters.”

The City and County of Honolulu is still welcoming volunteers to utilize its new Storm Drain Marking Map, which makes it easy for the community to volunteer where help is needed. The Storm Drain Marking program is a simple volunteer activity that involves marking storm drains with a placard that sends a message to the community to keep pollutants out of the storm drain system. It is an activity that can be done socially distanced and is an excellent opportunity to educate the public about the link between the storm drain system and water quality to help deter littering, excess fertilizer use, dumping, and other practices that contribute to urban runoff and nonpoint source pollution.

To sign up, use the map to click on an unmarked storm drain in the desired volunteer area, fill out information in the pop up window, and submit a request. Those interested can also submit a Volunteer Program Application to the email address: cleanwater@honolulu.gov.

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