The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

District will spend $75,000 to prevent storm water runoff pollution

By Steve Knight/managing editor

TCC will spend $75,000 this year for infrastructure required by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality to protect area lakes and rivers from polluted storm water runoff.

Steven Kleypas, TCC director of hazardous material management, said the funds come from the district’s environmental management budget.

“Our plan was written last year and is scheduled to be implemented over a five-year period,” he said.

The infrastructure includes the development of policies and procedures, employee training, maps of the campus systems and activities and outreach efforts, Kleypas said.

Once the infrastructure is in place and the level of effort reduced, Kleypas said, approximately $15,000 to $20,000 annually will be needed to maintain compliance with the terms of the general permit.

Plano-based W&M Environ-mental Group, which has been contracted by TCC to implement the Storm Water Management Program, said storm system sewers, known as MS4s are required to be permitted under the Texas Pollutant Elimination System.

Storm water is rain or snow melt flowing across parking lots, streets and roofs going into storm sewers instead of absorbing in the soil.

Cynthia Pfledderer, W&M project manager, said storm water goes directly into lakes and rivers, such as the Trinity, and does not go into a water treatment facility, unlike sanitary sewers.

“This means that any pollutants that are in the path of the storm water flow are transported into the MS4 and directly into our natural resources,” she said.

Pfledderer added that pollutants include litter, oil and grease, pet waste, pesticides, fertilizers, detergents and other chemicals, which may be used and stored outdoors.

“TCC students can help protect watersheds by being aware of these pollutants,” she said.

Although four out of five campuses, including Trinity River Campus, must be permitted, SE Campus also will implement protective measures, according to W&M.

Pfledderer said students, faculty, staff, contractors and visitors could help maintain clean campuses by reporting any observed spills or discharges into MS4s to the College District Storm Water Hotline at 817-515-6912.

The Storm Water Program Team will investigate reports to the hotline, and corrective measures will be made if needed.

 

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