Welcome to Stream Smart!
We need your Help!
Have you ever wondered how clean our creeks and rivers are? Did you know there are several species of salmon that return each year to spawn in our streams? The Stream Smart team invites you to learn ways we can keep our waters clean, fishable and swimmable. Learn easy ways you can help protect Bear Creek at home or in your community. Together we can have cool, clean water for life.
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Check the events calendar page for upcoming events!
Plants help protect streambanks and help prevent flooding while removing pollution. Learn how to improve your streambank, by streamside gardening.
Learn simple and beautiful solutions to manage stormwater runoff, including rain gardens, permeable pavements, and green roofs.
Commercial lots and businesses can also help to reduce pollution; from covering dumpsters to sweeping sidewalks.
Did you know you can help improve soil and water quality through your lawn care and gardening practices? We need your help!
Did you know washing your car can send detergents into the creek? Learn how to safely maintain your car or truck.
Whether you have a small hobby farm or a large operation, there are many ways Farmers, Ranchers, and Horticulturists can help protect our creeks, rivers, and streams.
What is Stormwater Pollution?
Stormwater runoff is precipitation that does not soak into the ground. Impervious surfaces like driveways, sidewalks, and streets prevent stormwater from naturally soaking into the ground.
To understand where stormwater goes, imagine a single raindrop falling from the sky. Follow this raindrop as it lands on your home. First, it flows over your rooftop, into your gutters, down your downspout, across the lawn and rolls down your driveway. At this point in the journey, the raindrop has picked up some debris from your roof, pesticides and fertilizer from your lawn, a bit of bacteria from your pet’s waste, as well as some petroleum and oil from your driveway. It has gathered sediment from the road and is carrying with it a gum wrapper and cigarette butts from the sidewalk.
As the raindrop continues down the street, it may flow directly into a local stream, or it might go into a ditch or a storm drain. If it flows into a storm drain, it continues to flow through an underground network of pipes, where it discharges through an outfall, untreated. This water goes directly into your local swimming hole.
Now imagine an entire storm — lots of raindrops — acting like a pressure washer directing the pollutants into streams and ponds, then into Bear Creek, the Rogue River, and all the way to Gold Beach at the ocean. That gum wrapper and cigarette butt may show up on your next rafting trip, or picnic to the beach. It happens, over and over again every season, every year, and it’s called stormwater pollution!
As we continue to grow and develop our cities and subdivisions, paving the landscape, more and more raindrops are forced into our storm drain systems, instead of sinking into the ground. This causes not only polluted water, but damages habitat for salmon, and causes flooding. Luckily there are simple things you can do on your own property to help protect the creeks, to reduce flooding and pollution. Explore this website to discover beautiful solutions and simple pledges you can take to make a difference today!
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