Storm Water

City of Sebastopol Storm Drain System

The City of Sebastopol owns and operates a storm water conveyance system located primarily within public streets and roads, and on public lands within the City of Sebastopol. The storm drain system includes an underground network of pipes connecting surface inlets in streets and elsewhere, where storm water collects. The majority of the City’s storm drain system flows in an easterly direction and discharges into the Laguna de Santa Rosa along our eastern boundary. A small area in the westerly portion of the City drains to Atascadero Creek at the Western City boundary.

Not all storm water systems in Sebastopol are owned and operated by the City. If you have a question as to whether a specific storm drain facility is owned by the City, please contact the Public Works Department.

Local Creeks

Surface water flowing in creeks and ditches also contributes water to the storm drain system. Zimpher Creek and Calder Creek are two major creek systems which carry surface water flows in Sebastopol, in addition to a number of smaller seasonal creeks and their tributaries within the City boundaries.

Are You Creek-friendly?

The Urban Creek Care Guide: Responsible Practices for Russian River Watershed Residents is a publication of the Russian River Watershed Association, designed to provide urban homeowners and residents with practical information on how to maintain healthy creeks in our watershed by engaging in creek-friendly, day-to-day activities. Limited quantities of this pamphlet will be available in City offices beginning October 27, 2014. Check it out and make friends with the creek in your backyard!

National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) and the Sebastopol Storm Water Management Plan

The City’s storm drain system includes over 24 miles of pipelines, hundreds of inlets and other structures, open channels and ditches, and represents an investment of over $15 million in storm drain infrastructure. Operation, maintenance and discharges to Sebastopol’s storm water system are regulated by the California State Water Resources Board, pursuant to the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) under a permit which establishes Waste Discharge Requirements for Storm Water Discharges from Small Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4).

The City’s NPDES permit requires a plan and program to protect our storm drains and waterways from pollution. Activities performed under our storm water program include:

  • Public outreach and education
  • Construction site management
  • Industrial facility inspections
  • “Best Management Practices” for maintenance of facilities
  • Investigation of illicit discharges or spills

Preventing Pollution – How You Can Help

Sebastopol residents, business people and visitors all value the natural beauty of our area, and we all play a role in protecting and preserving the natural resources that contribute so much to our quality of life. See below for additional information about the City’s Storm Water Plan and Program, and for links to some other useful online resources.

New! Storm Water Pollution Prevention for Businesses

Click here to visit the City of Santa Rosa’s website for a listing of Best Management Practices tailored to your business.