Select a Section

News & Updates All »


Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Trick or treat hours for the City of Goshen will be Thursday, Oct. 31 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Trick or treat Main Street, an event organized by the Chamber of Commerce, will be Thursday, Oct. 31, from noon to 5 p.m., in downtown Goshen. more


Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Norfolk Southern Railroad will close the Railroad crossing on Kercher Road between CR 31 & CR 33, due to a broken rail. They will close it around 10 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 17 and expect it to be reopened later that evening, unless delayed by the weather. more


Thursday, October 10, 2019

The second community conversation hosted by the Community Relations Commission and Goshen Community Schools will take place Thursday, October 24 at Schrock Pavilion in Shanklin Park, 411 W. Plymouth Ave. The conversation is titled How Goshen Grows: Balancing Power and Raising up Leaders. This... more

Upcoming Events All »

Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting

Tuesday, October 22, 2019, 4:00pm

City Council meeting - Budget 2nd reading

Tuesday, October 22, 2019, 7:00pm

Rescheduled due to Fall Break

Board of Public Works & Safety & Stormwater

Monday, October 28, 2019, 2:00pm

Stormwater News Archive

On this page, you can find links to important stormwater news articles identified by the Stormwater Department.

If you come across interesting and/or important stormwater news that you would like to let us know about, please email the Stormwater Department.


  • Check out this study conducted by the Green Infrastructure Center and the state forestry agencies in six states to study how urban trees can be used to reduce harmful stormwater runoff. (July 26, 2019)
  • Stormwater regulations can vary from municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) to MS4 across the State of Indiana and the United States. The Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) has set the minimum requirements with "Rule 5" (327 IAC 15-5) and MS4s have the ability to follow those requirements or to enact stricter requirements through "Rule 13" (IAC 15-13). However, this can create a patchwork of regulations that is frustrating to development. However, it is also important to protect water quality from stormwater pollution from construction projects. Thus, there is currently proposed legislation in the Indiana Legislator (House Bill (HB) 1266) that would restrict how stormwater regulations can be implemented statewide. Check out this Indy Star article on why HB 1266 would be harmful to Indiana waterways. (February 14, 2019)
  • The Clean Water Act (CWA) has a new addition in the form of the Water Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2018 (H.R. 7279). This legislation "is a major improvement over the CWA status quo" and "marks one of the most significant substantive changes to the CWA in decades", according to the National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA). Local governments will now have more flexibilities in how they use integrated planning strategies, in how they prioritize and sequence wastewater and stormwater compliance obligations, and how they incorporate the use of water reuse, water recycling, and green infrastructure into their projects. Finally, it directs the EPA to support the use of green infrastructure in permits, consent decrees, and settlement agreements. The EPA will also provide guidance to government and tribal entities and the general public. For more detailed information from NACWA click here. (January 18, 2019)
  • 2018 was one of the wettest years on record with five (5) 1-in-1000-year rain events and over 25 cities in the Midwestern and Eastern U.S. setting new rainfall records. For more information check out this recent blog post by StormSensor and watch this short video (January 15, 2019):
  • Check out two media stories covering the 2019 Storm Drain Art Project for the Cities of Goshen and Elkhart: WNDU-TV, Channel 16 News and 88.1 WVPE, local NPR radio station. (January 4, 2019)
  • Storm Drain Art Project 2019 – Call for Artists – The City of Goshen is pleased to announce the return of a popular street art project to our community. Storm Drain Art helps to raise awareness that our local waters need to be protected from the pollutants that flow into storm drains with stormwater runoff. This year, each storm drain art mural will be created with the following theme in mind: “Our rivers are a resource worth protecting.” The City of Goshen is seeking interested artists to participate in this project and more information and submission rules can be found at We are excited to see what our community can create! (January 2, 2019)


  • Today is World Soil Day, as the United Nations has declared every December 5th to be. This year’s theme is “Be the Solution to Soil Pollution” and these days pollution of all kinds is a worry and soil is also affected. Soil pollution is a hidden danger that lurks beneath our feet and everyone, everywhere, is affected. The soil has the ability to filter and minimize the impacts of pollutants but only to a point. Therefore, each of us must do our part to keep pollutants out of our soils, waters, and air. Be the Solution to Soil Pollution! (December 5, 2018) 
  • Goshen High School has been named one of Indiana's five state finalists for the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow contest with a project focusing on the development of a polyacrylamides (PAMs) passive treatment deployment system to help reduce the amount of sediment that could come from construction site runoff. (November 30, 2018)
  • We live in the Great Lakes Watershed and have access to the largest source of freshwater in the world but there is a danger out there that could impact the quality of our freshwater if proper management measures are not used. This danger is road salt (sodium chloride) used to maintain safe driving conditions during the winter. However, if the road salt is not properly applied then it can impact drinking water quality and aquatic habitats for animals and plants. Thus, a new guidance document has been issued by the Ontario Good Roads Association and Conservation Ontario to help people find a balance between safety, property, and the environment. (November 21, 2018) 
  • Deforestation can lead to many changes in animal communities and water quality in the impacted area but the potential for much more widespread changes exists if deforestation of the Amazon rainforest increases. Those looking into this issue say the changes would not only affect nearby countries but could have a global impact on weather and water resources. (November 21, 2018)
  • Each week scientists at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center produce maps showing the groundwater and soil moisture drought indicators. The map indicates if an area is drier (warm colors) or wetter (blues) than normal. The drought conditions in California and the slightly wetter than normal conditions in our area are very visible. (November 14, 2018)
  • A great video from Purdue Agriculture showcasing how water quality is a shared priority between urban and agricultural communities. Check out this excellent video called "Common Ground, Common Water: Water Quality: A Shared Priority". (November 2, 2018)
  • A University of Copenhagen (Denmark) has invented a stormwater treatment method that replicates how water soaks through the soil and then releases it to a nearby waterway. This is a green technology method that uses no power or chemicals. Here is another stormwater idea from Copenhagen as well. (November 1, 2018)
  • How Dutch stormwater management could have mitigated damage from Hurricane Florence. Check out this 15 minute 60 Minutes segment from September 23rd on what the Dutch have done to protect their country from flooding and what the rest of the world can learn from them. (October 23, 2018)
  • Imagine A Day Without Water was on October 10th and this is the 4th year we have been asked to imagine what a day without water would be like. For more information, you can check out the Imagine A Day Without Water website and the American Water Works Association "Value of Water" campaign website. You can also view the following video and if you are interested you can watch the longer version of the video here. How do you value water? (October 12, 2018)
  • Happy New Water Year! October 1st to September 30th is the best consecutive twelve months that span the "water storage/water usage cycle (hydrological cycle), water soaking into the ground (fall and winter rains and snowmelt) versus water flowing out or being used by plants during the drier months. If you are interested in learning more check out the United States Geological Survey page here. (October 4, 2018) 
  • Nearly a year apart, two historic hurricanes hit the United States in Texas (Hurricane Harvey - August 2017) and North Carolina (Hurricane Florence - September 2018). Both storms dropped trillions of gallons of water on the land and that water had to go somewhere. A recent study explains where Harvey's water went and recent satellite images show the stormwater runoff from Florence flowing out to the Atlantic Ocean. Either way, the stormwater/floodwaters from both of these storms were severely polluted. (September 21, 2018)
  • The Stormwater Education Field Trip Incentive (SEFTI) program helped the Goshen Middle School New Tech 8th Grade students take a field trip to the Elkhart Environmental Center where they learned about the history of the Center, the quality of the river, and how to be good stewards of our natural resources. Check out ABC57's coverage of this wonderful field trip experience. (September 20, 2018)
  • Stormwater could now become a water resource in areas where water is scarce due to a new technology that will remove pollutants from stormwater. This new technology makes stormwater a potential resource instead of a waste that needs to be disposed of. (September 7, 2018)
  • Colorado Springs, Colorado, has been accused of violating the Clean Water Act because they neglected their stormwater system and did not meet the requirements of their MS4 discharge permit. Now the EPA and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment or suing Colorado Springs and the impact (fines and program improvements) will come at the expense of residents. This is an example of why the City of Goshen needs to do everything we can to meet the requirements of our MS4 permit. (September 7, 2018) 
  • August is National Water Quality Month and the week of August 13th is Indiana Water Quality Week where we celebrate Indiana's abundant freshwater ecosystems (also considered a natural resource). Our freshwater resources support a billion-dollar economy, which includes agriculture, recreation, and industry. High water quality and availability are important to a high quality of life. Each of us can do our part to reduce water pollution and improve water quality in our local communities. Find out more here. (August 14, 2018)
  • It is well known that plastic pollution breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces over time. Now, new research has been published showing how certain kinds of plastic pollution floating in the ocean will release more and more greenhouse gases the longer they are exposed to sunlight and seawater. This research also showed that certain kinds of plastics will emit greenhouse gases when exposed to sunlight and air. So no matter where plastic pollution is located it will have an impact on water quality and our climate. (August 8, 2018)
  • The federal government is considering legislation (H.R. 3906) that would require the EPA to provide funding for three to five centers of excellence for innovative stormwater control research and to provide grants to tribes and state and local governments to implement innovative stormwater control infrastructure projects. In the meantime, the University of Notre Dame is actively setting up a Center for Civic Innovation which will be researching stormwater management solutions. (July 23, 2018)
  • If you have ever wondered where the water that falls on your home, school, or business flows to, you are thinking about your Watershed Address. For example, in Goshen, your Watershed Address could be Rock Run Creek, The Elkhart River, The St. Joe River, Lake Michigan (Great Lakes), and finally the Atlantic Ocean. If you live near the Baugo Creek you can now watch a video showing how a raindrop flows down the Baugo to the St. Joe River. Thank you to the Elkhart County Soil and Water Conservation District and Elkhart County Surveyor for creating this excellent video. (July 13, 2018)
  • The head of the EPA, Scott Pruitt, is seeking to limit the EPA's authority to block permits for activities (e.g. dredging or filling) that could pollute or harm waterways. "[Mr.] Pruitt said [this change] would increase regulatory certainly while still maintaining protections for clean water." - The Hill (July 3, 2018)
  • Check out a new feature recently released for Google Earth that showcases different waterways from the view of space. It is amazing to see these different waterways from around the world and how they are affected by their surrounding landscapes and affect them in turn. (July 3, 2018)
  • A train derailment on Saturday, June 23, of 32 tanker cars in northwestern Iowa near the city of Doon, caused approximately 230,000 gallons of crude oil to spill into the floodwaters of the Little Rock River. Due to the floodwaters communities downstream are concerned with what affects the crude oil will have upon their drinking water sources. This raises the question, which form of oil transport is better pipeline or tanker? (June 27, 2018)
  • There are five (5) differences between plastic pollution in the Great Lakes compared to plastic pollution in the world's oceans. Either way, plastic pollution that flows from our lands eventually makes it to an ocean. (June 21, 2018)
  • How often does a 1,000-year flood event occur? In the case of Ellicott City, MD, it happened twice over a two year period. A 1,000-year flood event is better described as a 1 in a 1,000 chance that a flood of that size will happen in any given year. (June 15, 2018)
  • By 2050 there will be more plastic debris in the ocean than fish! Hard to believe? Unfortunately, this is a true statement based on current human activities. Additionally, plastic debris has been observed in the Mariana Trench (the deepest place on Earth) and throughout the world's oceans. Even here in Goshen, Indiana, we have a connection to the ocean through the Elkhart River, which flows to Lake Michigan, and ultimately to the Atlantic Ocean. Do your part and keep plastic out of our storm drains. (June 15, 2018)
  • Tree cover in urban areas across the nation is being lost and this is not a good thing. The loss of trees increases the use of electricity and natural gas, it increases the amount of stormwater runoff from hard surfaces reducing water quality in streams, increases the temperature in those areas, and cause more pollution to be released. This is not a good trend to have and we need to work to increase tree cover for the benefit of our communities and the environment. The City of Goshen is working to improve the percent tree cover to 45% in the year 2045. (June 5, 2018)
  • Trash! It is a topic on many peoples' minds right now because it has become an issue along our roadsides, in our neighborhoods, and at our places of work. It has become such an issue of concern that local officials are talking about ways to reduce the problem. Additionally, INDOT maintenance crews picked up 2,857 bags of trash on April 13th in a statewide clean-up effort along State Roads. Please don't litter and if you see trash lying around pick it up. Your local waterways and community thank you. (May 2, 2018) 
  • The Cuyahoga River in Cleveland, Ohio, is once again under the microscope as are a number of other rivers throughout the Great Lakes Watershed. This is because they continue to carry harmful pollutants (e.g. trash, medications, fertilizers, nutrients, and sediment) and this time it is harming aquatic wildlife like fish. (April 12, 2018)
  • IMPORTANT! The MS4 Advisory Board meeting scheduled for this Wednesday, April 11, has been canceled. The next MS4 Advisory Board Meeting will be held on May 2nd at the Elkhart County Public Service Building. (April 9, 2018)
  • Do you recognize this picture? 
    This is a picture of the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland on fire, but it was not the only river in the United States to burn. Find out more about the recovery of another river that only a few decades ago burned and had flames reaching 50 feet into the air. A new film shows the recovery of the Rouge River near Detroit from when it burned to present day conditions where lake sturgeon now live. (April 9, 2018)
  • Approximately 42,000 gallons of diesel fuel spilled into a southwest Indiana creek near Solitude, Indiana. Cleanup efforts are underway and the environmental impact is unknown at this time. (March 30, 2018)
  • Sediment is the number one pollutant by volume in our waterways today and one way we can stop sediment from entering our waterways is to keep the bare soil covered with plants or mulch. Whether you live on a farm or in a city or town you can be part of the solution. (March 28, 2018)
  • Today is World Water Day and this year's theme is "Nature for Water." Water is necessary for all aspects of life and when the water we rely upon becomes polluted or scarce daily life becomes harder. We can work together with nature to reduce the impacts of floods, droughts, and water pollution! (March 22, 2018)  
  • Was the Indiana flood of 2018 one for the record books? Here in Goshen the Elkhart River crested at 12.49 feet, which was 0.55 feet higher than the previous worst flood that occurred back on March 14, 1982, so from a flooding standpoint yes it was the worst flood in recorded history but before records were kept there may have been worse floods (March 13, 2018)
  • The US EPA has released an action plan on how to stop algal blooms from jeopardizing Lake Erie's drinking water, fishing, and tourism. The goal is to reduce the amount of phosphorous running into Lake Erie by 40 percent. Click here to read more about the plan. (March 13, 2018)
  • Chicago, Illinois, has a greenprint, which has helped the City save $6.4 billion per year in flood reduction, water purification, and carbon sequestration. This shows how important it is to consider natural resources when developing. They are now updating it along with Chicago's regional comprehensive plan. (March 12, 2018)
  • Mardi Gras wreaks havoc on the storm drains in New Orleans and crews removed 93,000 pounds of plastic beads from a five-block stretch along Charles Avenue, which is a main parade route. New Orleans Public Works came up with a simple fix to keep debris from falling into storm drains and is something Goshen should consider during the Fair Parade. (March 7, 2018)
  • The flood of February 2018, that our area is still recovering from, is the worst flood on record. The Elkhart River crested at 12.49 feet at 6:15 pm on February 21st. For more information on the level of the river click here. Note that the times given are in Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) and UTC is five hours faster than Goshen.
  • Goshen is currently experiencing a flood event and major flooding is now forecasted. Flood stage for the Elkhart River begins at 7.0 feet and as of 9:45 pm February 20th the river was at 10.47 feet (5:00 am today the river was at 6.6 feet). The National Weather Service is predicting the river will crest near 11.7 feet around 1:00 pm Wednesday, February 21st, and fall below flood stage by the end of the weekend. At this time Chicago Avenue is closed and Rogers Park is underwater as are portions of the parking lot across the street. The forecasted height of this flood compares to previous historical flood events from 1982 and 1985. For more information on the height of the flood waters visit the National Weather Service River Gauge Page for the Elkhart River. (February 20, 2018, 10:40 pm)
  • The highs and lows of human life end up in museums around the world. Now a piece of a famous "fatberg" that clogged a London, England, sewer back in September of 2017, is on display for educational purposes. (February 12, 2018)
  • What is the connection between groundwater and the Clean Water Act? The answer is called the "conduit theory" and how it is interpreted from a legal standpoint is confusing. Two different court cases have ruled in opposite directions and are pitting Law vs. Nature. Yet, no matter what the courts decide, it is clear that groundwater and surface water are connected so if polluted water is pumped into the ground it will eventually reach a surface water nearby. For a more detailed discussion click here. (February 9, 2018)
  • The Waters of the United State rule (WOTUS), which was passed in 2015, will now not be implemented until 2020 according to the EPA and USACOE. The need to clarify which wetlands and streams are regulated under the Clean Water Act is important and past Supreme Court rulings have caused some confusion. (February 6, 2018)
  • Governors have begun giving their State of the State speeches and some are focusing on water infrastructure as a priority including Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb. (January 16, 2018)
  • Watch Deb Jimison, Elkhart County SWCD Conservationist, talk about rain barrels and explain how Elkhart County residents can take advantage of an incentive program and workshops to learn more about rain barrels. (January 16, 2018)
  • Salt Pollution in our nation's rivers and streams is increasing a new study released just this week says. The sources of this increasing salinity (saltiness) are salt use on winter roads for safety, fertilizers, mining waste, and the weathering of concrete, rocks, and soil. The increased salinity of our waterways poses risks to drinking water and our nation's pipe infrastructure. The good thing is there are solutions as the people of the southwest can show us since the salinity of their waterways has decreased over time. (January 10, 2018)
  • Here are two excellent videos talking about farmlands and water quality and what can and is being done on these lands to protect water quality. Conservation practices like vegetated buffers and wetland preservation are extremely important to protect water quality. These practices can also be used in urban areas to protect water quality. We all have a part to play! (January 8, 2018) 
  • A study published in March 2017 described research on how stormwater ponds do not effectively remove road salts and other chemicals from stormwater runoff. Eventually, the salt and other chemicals reach surface water through the groundwater. More research is needed! (January 4, 2018)
  • Pain-killers, medications, and illicit drugs are found in the Great Lakes ecosystem and can harm the fish and insects that call the water home. Please make sure to dispose of expired or unused drugs properly by dropping them off in the lobby of the Goshen Police Station or any other local police station. (January 4, 2018)
  • Come learn about rain barrels and build one at the same time on Saturday, February 3rd at the Elkhart County 4-H Fairgrounds. Rain barrels help to slow down stormwater runoff from your house and it is a great way to harvest free water from the sky for your flowers. Click here for more information and how to register; space is limited. (January 4, 2018)
  • Our Great Lakes hold ONE-FIFTH of the World's Freshwater and they are in trouble from polluted runoff from urban and agricultural areas, loss of wetlands, non-native plant and animal species are pushing out native plants and animal species. Click here to find out more about these issues and what is being done to protect the largest source of freshwater in the world. (January 4, 2018)


  • Paved driveways have so many benefits for our homes but they are a potential source for stormwater runoff to pick up pollutants. By taking a few steps you can minimize the impact your driveway has on stormwater. (December 15, 2017)
  • The new stormwater detention basin on the south side of the intersection of Lincoln and Steury Avenues is almost complete even though it had to go through some mid-project changes. (December 13, 2017)
  • The first triennial assessment of progress on Great Lakes Water Quality report was released on November 28, 2017, by the International Joint Commission (IJC) for the Great Lakes. The IJC report provides background on issues facing the Great Lakes and offers recommendations on moving forward to protect the water quality of the Great Lakes for years to come. This includes the implementation of green infrastructure practices to manage stormwater runoff. For a summary click here. (December 6, 2017)
  • In any urban area stormwater runoff increases with development but this can be minimized by using something called green infrastructure. In China, they are building "Sponge Cities" to help reducing flooding issues. (November 27, 2017)
  • If you live in the Town of Bristol, City of Elkhart, City of Goshen, or Elkhart County you can get money back by installing a rain garden or rain barrels. A similar program is also available in Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County, Michigan. (November 27, 2017)
  • An ancient tool can help communities reduce stormwater pollution. This ancient tool is the canopy of a tree! Click here to find out more why tree canopies are so helpful or just go out and stand under one during a rain shower. (November 21, 2017)
  • Recent research in the waterways of Puget Sound in Washington showed that up to 4 out of 10 coho salmon would die before they could spawn due to toxic stormwater runoff. The question we need to ask is What impact does stormwater runoff have on the fish and other aquatic wildlife in the Goshen area? (November 3, 2017)
  • Investing in nature to address the serious environmental and public health issue that is stormwater runoff is becoming more and more acceptable. Check out this article from Forbes about how investing in nature can be a triple win for cities, communities, and developers. (October 27, 2017)
  • The Greater Elkhart County Stormwater Partnership has released the 2018-2019 Elkhart County Waters: Why We Care Calendar. You can pick up your copy at downtown City offices, the Parks Department offices, and a number of local businesses. (October 23, 2017)
  • As the U.S. Department of Agriculture works to complete a new Farm Bill over the next coming year the American Water Works Association is pushing for programs to help farmers and water utilities work together to protect the nation's drinking water sources. (October 13, 2017)
  • Imagine A Day Without Water. What would be the first thing you would miss if water did not come out of the faucet when you turned it on? October 12th was the third annual Imagine a Day Without Water and you can learn more about it by clicking here. (October 13, 2017). 
  • Extreme floods and droughts get a lot of attention because of the damage and disruption they cause but the day to day changes in precipitation or lack of precipitation can also have a big impact. New research shows precipitation changes are occurring on a much smaller scale than previously understood. (September 26, 2017)
  • The New York Department of Environmental Protection along with the Water Research Foundation has released a report entitled Innovative and Integrated Stormwater Management, which examined a number of stormwater programs throughout the USA and from around the world. (September 26, 2017)
  • An accidental release of milk to the Cicero Creek in Tipton, IN, turned the creek white. State environmental officials indicated the release of the milk was not dangerous but it is considered an illicit discharge. An environmental cleanup company removed approximately 14,000 gallons of water and milk from the creek to clean up the spill. (September 15, 2017) 
  • The development and paving over of wetlands and prairies around Huston, Texas, made the Hurricane Harvey disaster worse. Since the 1950s nearly 88 square miles of wetlands have disappeared. In comparison, the St. Joseph River Watershed (4,685 square miles) has lost approximately 53 percent of its pre-settlement wetlands. (August 31, 2017)
  • Microfibers continue to be an issue is our waterways and now research shows that microfibers not only come from wastewater treatment discharge but also from the air itself where it is transported to waterways through stormwater runoff. Be aware. Be informed. (August 30, 2017)
  • The last week has brought heavy rains and the resulting flooding conditions to the mainstream news because of Hurricane Harvey in southeast Texas and the monsoon rains in India, Nepal, and Bangladesh. Both regions have received large amounts of rain, which have resulted in deadly conditions which were made worse by all of the hard surface areas (pavement, rooftops, etc.) of major cities and the lack of pervious areas (grass, wetlands, etc.) to allow the water to soak in. The management of stormwater runoff and the maintenance of storm sewer systems is very important and will only become more important in our urban and rural areas as weather patterns continue to change. (August 30, 2017)
  • An exhaustive global analysis of rainfall and rivers shows flooding in cities/urban areas is increasing while the countryside/non-urban areas have soils that are much drier. This research is based on real data and is showing a real-world effect of changing climate on our world. (August 19, 2017)
  • Climate change may be natural or human-caused but the data speaks for itself and recent research points to an increase in precipitation and an increase in intense rainfall for the Great Lakes area, which can lead to more stormwater runoff and negatively impact water quality in our waterways. (August 15, 2017)
  • Ever wonder why water keeps coming into your basement or if you live in an area that could experience flooding? If you have (or even if you haven't) here is a great resource to see if your home could flood and how you can reduce that risk: My RainReady (August 14, 2017)
  • The year's Dead Zone in the Gulf of Mexico is the largest ever recorded at a whopping 8,776 square miles (about the size of New Jersey). A dead zone is an area of water with extremely low oxygen that can kill fish and other aquatic wildlife. (August 7, 2017)
  • Voluntary steps to reduce nutrient pollution to Lake Erie and the Gulf of Mexico are not working and algae blooms and dead zones continue to be an issue. Nutrient pollution issues have been reduced in the Chesapeake Bay since mandatory steps were implemented. Is it time for mandatory steps in Lake Erie and the Gulf of Mexico watersheds? Read more here. (August 2, 2017)
  • A new statewide poll shows Hoosiers are more concerned about protecting the environment than lowering taxes. (July 28, 2017)
  • The overall condition of the Great Lakes remains fair and unchanging. Check out the State of the Great Lakes 2017 Highlights Report for more information (July 26, 2017)
  • Each property owner can play a part in reducing stormwater pollution by installing rain barrels and/or rain gardens on their properties. An article from the Chesapeake Bay Watershed provides some clarity on common misconceptions that come with rain barrels and rain gardens. (July 26, 2017)
  • Hot, summer weather and cool streams, rivers, and lakes go hand in hand but please be careful of blue-green algae because it can cause rashes, sickness, and even death. Stormwater runoff can contain nutrient pollution, which leads to an increase in the amount of algae growing in our waterways. Click here for more information. (June 20, 2017)
  • Model My Watershed is a tool that allows a user to analyze data, model storms, and compare conservation and development scenarios in a watershed. It is free and can be used to see how a rain garden or a new parking lot will impact runoff and how water soaks into the soil. (May 23, 2017)
  • A 2016 USGS study showed the timely removal of leaf piles in the fall from urban streets can reduce harmful levels of phosphorus in stormwater runoff. (May 18, 2017)
  • Microplastics are an every water problem and it isn't just microbeads. Check out this article to find out more about the issue, how it has made its way into the aquatic food chain, and what you can do about it. (May 17, 2017)
  • South Bend looks to reduce combined sewer overflows to the St. Joe River by installing green infrastructure practices. (May 9, 2017)
  • Green infrastructure (rain gardens, pervious pavement, trees, etc.) can reduce combined sewer overflows by slowing down stormwater and soaking it up. Evansville, IN, and a number of other cities are doing just that and saving millions of dollars in the process. (April 25, 2017)
  • To protect the Great Lakes we need to watch how much fertilizer and pesticides we add to our lawns. If the fertilizers or pesticides do not have time to soak in or dry up before it rains they will be washed into the nearest storm drain or waterbody. (April 21, 2017)
  • Dispose of your medications properly to prevent them from entering our local waterways. Wastewater treatment plants are not able to remove medications before the water is released to the river. This is a global issue that is not very well understood and is being studied in the Hudson River. (April 17, 2017)
  • In the Great Lakes area where we live we have wonderful groundwater sources but out west that is not always the case. No matter what city or town you live in the large amounts of hard surface (pavement, rooftops, etc.) cause large amounts of stormwater to runoff into our local waterways. Thus, it is important to find ways to let more stormwater soak into the ground instead of pushing it downstream. Check out this article from L.A. for more information. (April 14, 2017)
  • The University of Minnesota released a study suggests that household fertilizer use and pet waste are the major sources of nutrients polluting the lakes, streams, and rivers around the Twin Cities in Minnesota. (April 13, 2017)
  • The three major pollutants in our waterways today are sediment (#1 by volume), E.coli/bacteria (#1 in Elkhart County), and nutrients (e.g. fertilizers). These three pollutants and other pollutants fluctuate over time and cause different water quality issues. The USGS just released a study and an interactive map showing water quality trends between 1972 and 2012. Check them out. (April 11, 2017)
  • Hoosier farmers work to improve water quality by restoring marginal farmland to more natural habitats leading to a reduction in nutrients entering waterways. Check out what farmers along the Wabash River are doing but landowners everywhere can do their part as well. (April 5, 2017)
  • Stormwater is an important resource for our local waterways but we need to handle it correctly or it can severely damage those waterways it flows into. (March 28, 2017)
  • Trees are important to our daily lives in many ways from removing CO2 from the air, collecting water when it rains, and cooling the ground. Scientists are calling for more attention to be paid to the impact trees can have on climate change. (March 21, 2017)
  • The Federal Government is looking to spend 1 trillion dollars on infrastructure and EPA Director Scott Pruitt wants the infrastructure plan to include stormwater drains and pipes in addition to sanitary sewer and drinking water infrastructure. (March 7, 2017) 
  • Local communities in Goshen, IN, and Ann Arbor, MI, deal with inadequate drainage by constructing stormwater detention basins. (February 16, 2017)
  • California's drought is being quenched but the greater-than-normal rainfall is causing some major erosion issues. Highways are being washed away and the Oroville Dam north of Sacramento is in danger of failing, causing 188,000 people to evacuate. These are great and scary reminders of the power of water. (February 14, 2017)
  • The most common pieces of trash found on Lake Michigan beaches are cigarette butts, takeout containers, straws, and water bottles. The good news is they are from local sources if we all pitch in to keep trash out of our local waterways we won't have to share our beaches with trash! (February 14, 2017)
  • Stormwater used to be seen as a nuisance but now it is being seen as a resource, which means we need to rethink how we handle stormwater runoff. Instead of piping it to local waterways we need to allow it to soak into the ground. (February 3, 2017)
  • Los Angeles County, California, has captured 22 billion gallons of stormwater this rainy season (since mid-October) and allowed it to soak into the ground. Unfortunately, 58% of California is still experiencing drought conditions. (January 27, 2017)
  • Recent warm weather and decaying plant matter is the source of foam on the St. Joseph River near South Bend. (January 26, 2017)
  • During the winter months, street and highway departments across the nation spread thousands of tons of salt to roadways to keep them ice-free. But all of this salt is harming the environment and communities are beginning to use alternatives to salt. The City of Goshen applies salt, sand, and BOOST. Find out more here. (January 17, 2017)
  • Stormwater can be treated as a resource instead of a nuisance leading to cleaner water. Check out what St. Paul, Minnesota, and communities in California are doing to accomplish this. (January 12, 2017) 
  • Currently stormwater is a major source of water pollution and one way to reduce the impact of stormwater runoff is through smaller and more widespread green infrastructure practices. This raises the question of long-term maintenance and functionality. Chicago is looking into these questions to ensure today's stormwater solutions do not become future stormwater problems. (January 6, 2017)
  • Have you seen the Elkhart County Waters Calendar before? We are looking for pictures for the 2018-2019 Calendar and would love to use one of yours. For more information click here or call the Elkhart County SWCD at 574-533-4383, extension 3. (January 4, 2017)


  • EPA's newest National Lakes Assessment study finds nutrient (nitrogen and phosphorus) pollution is widespread in our nation's lakes, with 4 in 10 lakes suffering from too much nitrogen and phosphorus. (December 22, 2016)
  • Check out the new page Stormwater Videos for some excellent information. (December 21, 2016)
  • A new study shows that approximately 22 million pounds of plastic enter the Great Lakes every year. To understand this better Lake Michigan receives the equivalent of 100 Olympic-sized pools of plastic bottles every year! (December 21, 2016)
  • The problems facing the Great Lakes of North America and East Africa are facing the same problems. Read more here. (December 13, 2016)
  • A national poll shows bipartisan support for water infrastructure funding bill. Read more about it here. In addition, see the report and article two bullet points below, about the nation's water infrastructure funding needs. (December 7, 2016) 
  • A warming climate has the potential for an increase in extreme rain events says a recent study published in the Nature Climate Change Journal. Here is a similar article showing how heavy downpours are on the rise across the U.S. (December 7, 2016)
  • A recent report details how much investment is needed in Indiana's water infrastructure to ensure it continues to work properly. (December 7, 2016)
  • Water infrastructure in our country is aging and without proper maintenance leaks and breaks will only become worse. When a pipe breaks it can cause sediment, raw sewage, and other pollutants to enter our waterways. To find out more about how approximately 2.1 trillion gallons of water is wasted annually and for what needs to be done to address this problem read this article. (November 29, 2016)
  • The Greater Elkhart County Stormwater Partnership will be hosting introductory meetings of a new way to submit the required inspection reports. Come find out more about PermiTrack and how this online software works either on Thursday, December 1st; Thursday, December 15th; or Wednesday, January 18th, 2017. (November 21, 2016)
  • EPA has finalized modifications to Phase II MS4 regulations. The final rule establishes two alternative ways for NPDES permitting authorities to issue and administer MS4 general permits. Read more here. (November 18, 2016)
  • Are synthetic fleece and other types of clothing harming our water? Read the Washington Post article here. (November 4, 2016)
  • Can Chicago's geology help solve the issue of frequent flooding and sewage discharges in some areas? Read more about it here. FYI - In Chicago, a one-inch rainstorm generates four billion gallons of stormwater runoff! (November 4, 2016)
  • Two Nonpoint Source Water Pollution Reports came out today. An annual report for Indiana's Program and a national report on the work completed under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act. (October 28, 2016)
  • EPA launches a new guide for long-term stormwater planning and will work with five pilot communities. For more information click here. (October 27, 2016)
  • Michigan had developed a Water Strategy Plan for how to sustain its many water resources for the next generation. One of these strategies is to reduce the impact of stormwater on water resources by implementing green infrastructure practices. Check out their website for more information or read the full report. (October 27, 2016)
  • Beyond plastic micro-beads, plastic fibers are now emerging as a pollutant in the Great Lakes. Read more Here. (October 26, 2016)
  • What kind of trash is found in our waterways? Several groups in the Long Creek Watershed in southern Maine participated in a trash cleanup to determine what kinds of trash and how much was picked up. Read more Here. (October 26, 2016)
  • Efforts to keep the invasive Asian Carp fish from entering the Great Lakes Watershed have been completed in Fort Wayne with the construction of a berm and trail at the Eagle Marsh Nature Preserve on the southwest side of Fort Wayne. Read more Here. (October 10, 2016)
  • If you are interested in finding out how trees can help clean up the Great Lakes read about it here or read here for the answer to the question of how much is a tree worth? (September 30, 2016)
  • EPA Awards $4.8 million to Six Universities to Research Water Quality Benefits - Read Here (September 20, 2016)
  • The Great Lakes are holding their heat this September - Read Here (September 20, 2016)
  • A recent study by the USGS shows microplastics were present in water samples taken from a number of rivers that flow into the Great Lakes. For an illustrated look at the study's results click here (September 14, 2016).
  • Poisonous Algae Blooms Threaten People, Ecosystems Across U.S. - Read Here (August 30, 2016)
  • New Dam Pond Board Hears Public Comments About Dredging - Read Here (August 30, 2016)
  • Female scientists to sample plastics in all five Great Lakes - Read Here (August 17, 2016) - "In parts of the Great Lakes, we have a higher density of microplastics than in any of the ocean gyres." - Jennifer Pate, Filmmaker
  • Great lakes water temperatures surging with summer heat - Read Here (August 10, 2016)
  • An Olympic-Sized Problem - Water quality issues and the Rio Olympics - Read Here
  • EPA and the City of Philadelphia partner together to advance innovative urban stormwater control. (EPA or Philadelphia) (July 29, 2016)
  • Find out how much water your daily activities actually uses by checking out the Water Footprint Calculator (English or Spanish) (July 26, 2016)
  • Preparing for a wetter future in the Great Lakes Region - Read Here (July 25, 2016)
    • If you are interested in reading more about this topic take a look at the Extreme Storms in Michigan report by the Rocky Mountain Climate Organization and the Natural Resources Defense Council
  • South Bend and Mishawaka spend millions of dollars to clean up the St. Joseph River - Read/Watch Here (July 18, 2016)
  • WSBT 22 Fact Finder: Invading the Water - Read/Watch Here (July 18, 2016)
  • St. Joseph County neighborhood calls for County to clean up the Philips Ditch area -  Read/Watch Here (July 18, 2016)Street Sweeping 101 - Learn all about street sweeping Here (July 14, 2016)
  • New York City Begins Building 321 Curbside Rain Gardens - Read Here for more information (June 8, 2016)
  • Storm Drain Art Walk 2016 - Click Here for more information (June 3, 2016).
  • All Great Lakes warmer than last year but not warm enough for swimming - Read Here (May 26, 2016)
  • Goshen Dam Pond dredging could begin by July - Read Here (May 23, 2016)
  • Wetland enhancement in the Midwest could help reduce catastrophic floods of the future - Read Here
    • For information on a wetland restoration project in the St. Joe River Watershed click Here
  • International Efforts to Combat Algal Blooms in Lake Erie - Read Here
    • Here is how you can do to reduce nutrient pollution in stormwater locally.
  • Street Sweepers Keep Stormwater Cleaner - Read Here
  • Lack of ice coverage on Great Lakes raises scientific concerns leading into spring months - Read Here