Stormwater is rainwater that runs off hard surfaces and, through the drainage system, enters into nearby streams, creeks, rivers, estuaries and finally – into the ocean. As stormwater runs freely, it picks up various pollutants, including nutrients, fertiliser, sediment, litter, household chemicals, green waste and debris. These are the greatest source of pollution, impacting the health of the whole estuary. Research shows that pollution loads from the urban environment, containing phosphorus, nitrogen, and suspended solids, are between 150% and 400% above natural levels. Many pollutants are highly reactive, and can negatively affect the quality of water and sediment upon entering the waterways.
A range of stormwater improvement works which are funded through the Australian Government's Improving Your Local Parks and Environment grant program are currently underway at Berkeley Vale, Blue Haven, Gorokan, Killarney Vale and The Entrance.