Water Quality (NPDES)

What is NPDES?

The National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permit program was first introduced as part of the Clean Water Act in 1972. The goal of the permit program is to control and regulate the discharge of point source pollution into the nation's water by issuing permits to dischargers. Drainage systems, like the City of Des Moines' drainage system, are considered dischargers.

Nationally, the NPDES program is administered by the Environmental Protection Agency. In some states, including Washington, the authority to administer the program has been delegated to the State. In Washington, this authority belongs to the Washington State Department of Ecology (Ecology).

Phase II of the NPDES program unfolded in 1999 and required that smaller communities also obtain permit coverage and develop stormwater management plans. The NPDES permit requirements include public education/outreach, public involvement/participation, illicit discharge detection/elimination, controlling runoff from construction sites, and public operations/maintenance.

Surface Water Management Program

Surface Water Management Program (SWMP) Plan is a written documentation to inform the public of the yearly planned SWMP activities according to the program components specified in NPDES Western WA Phase II Municipal Stormwater Permit. The SWMP Plan will be updated annually for submittal with City's annual report to the State Department of Ecology.

Submit Public Comments

The City is currently accepting public comments for the implementation and update of the City's SWMP plan. To provide comments or obtain education materials, contact Tyler Beekley, NPDES Program Coordinator, at tbeekley@desmoineswa.gov.