Surface & Stormwater
Surface water staff manage the city's stormwater system and work with residents, businesses and property owners to reduce stormwater pollution, promote private stormwater management and protect our rivers, streams and groundwater. The City spans 20 distinct drainage basins in three different watersheds. Runoff from homes, roads and parking lots makes its way to Lake Washington, the Snohomish River and Port Gardner Bay. View or download our map, Everett drainage basins & watersheds (PDF).
Many times stormwater runoff is not treated before it is released into streams, rivers, lakes and Puget Sound. Approximately 75% of all pollution in Puget Sound comes from every day activities. There are many every day choices that you can make to help minimize pollution in our waterways.
To learn more, view information listed below:
- 10 ways to prevent stormwater pollution (PDF).
- Car washing (PDF)
- Pet waste dispensers (PDF) flyer for multi-family complexes.
- The poop problem (PDF) flyer. Poop Solution kits are available for local veterinary clinics to distribute to their clients.
Contact Apryl Hynes, Public Information & Education Specialist, email or 425-257-8992 for more information.
The City of Everett offers some short-term and long-term volunteer opportunities that help protect our surface water quality. You can:
- Volunteer to pick-up litter through Adopt a street
- Keep a Mutt Mitt dispenser filled
- Mark storm drains to remind people that only water should go down those drains.
Visit our volunteer opportunities webpage to learn more.
We ask that you report:
- Spills, even if accidental
- Clogged storm drains
- Illicit discharges or connections
Watch our video, "City of Everett Stormwater & You."
Learn more about how to spot illicit discharge. View or download, Warning signs of illicit discharge (PDF). There are a few situations where natural occurring phenomenon can appear to be serious pollution problems. View or download, Natural occurring concerns (PDF).
Having a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) stormwater permit, allows the permit holder to discharge water into existing bodies of water (waters of the state) such as creeks, lakes, Snohomish River and Port Gardner Bay. The City maintains a Phase II Municipal Stormwater Permit coverage, which authorizes discharge from the City's storm drain system.
For More Information
Stormwater Management Program (SWMP)The City’s stormwater management program document describes actions the city will take throughout 2019 to maintain compliance with the permit's stormwater management program conditions, which are designed to reduce stormwater runoff pollution to Everett's waterways.
For more information, view or download:
- 2019 stormwater management program plan (PDF)
- 2018 Everett annual municipal stormwater permit compliance report (PDF)
In Everett, some stormwater discharges to water bodies and some is captured in a combined sewer system and conveyed to our wastewater treatment plant, called the Everett Water Pollution Control Facility. View our sewer webpage for information on how we clean wastewater.
Surface water comprehensive plan (SWCP)
The City of Everett surface water comprehensive plan consists of 4 volumes, including a summary & implementation plan along with 3 watershed volumes. The Lake Washington, Port Gardner Bay and Snohomish River watershed volumes have individual basin plans for areas that drain to streams & lakes. View or download, our SWCP (PDF).
Green stormwater infrastructure (GSI)
In a natural environment, soil and plants help absorb rain. But in our urban environment, where streets, buildings, and parking lots cover the ground, rain washes over these hard surfaces resulting in erosion and flooding that can harm properties and wildlife habitat. The resulting stormwater runoff also carries sediment, oil, fertilizers and other pollutants to local rivers and streams.
Green stormwater infrastructure (GSI) uses vegetation, soils and other elements and practices to restore some of the natural processes needed to manage surface water and create healthier urban environments.
Sign-up for the city's Green Home, Green Garden e-newsletter, contact Apryl Hynes, Public Information & Education Specialist, email.
Downspout disconnection is only recommended for those in the combined system areas of Everett. Disconnecting downspouts helps reduce some of the stress heavy rainfall has on the combined system, where pipes carry both wastewater and stormwater to the wastewater treatment plant.View or download our map of the combined sewer area (PDF).
Correctly disconnecting your downspouts helps direct water away from your house to a suitable area where the runoff can spread and soak into the surrounding landscape or another designated area.
This can be accomplished fairly easily with an elbow, pipe extension and splash block. Besides having a suitable area for water runoff, other factors must be taken into consideration before disconnecting such as:
- Are the downspouts an adequate distance from adjacent property lines?
- Are there assurances that the excess water will not affect neighboring properties?
- Does your property slope towards or away from your foundation?
- How would the water flow once it is released from downspout?
If your property does not meet minimum requirements, downspout disconnection is not recommended.
Rain barrels are a great way to collect and store rain water runoff from your roof for later use. The City of Everett offers one-day sales and make-it, take-it workshops in the spring and fall to help you take advantage of this free resource.
To learn more about rain barrels, view or download the rain barrel flyer (PDF).
Visit our rain barrels webpage for more information and schedule.
Rain gardens are a landscaped area that collects, absorbs and filters stormwater runoff from roof tops, driveways and other areas that don't allow water to soak in.
Learn about Everett's rain garden rebate program, which offers up to a $2,500 rebate, on our Rain Gardens webpage.
View or download our brochure, rain garden rebate (PDF).
Our yards are places for fun, beauty and relaxing. But, in taking care of them, we often use water inefficiently, produce a lot of yard waste and overuse chemicals such as fertilizers and pesticides. These products can be bad for us and the environment. By making some simple changes in our yards habits, we can save time, money and protect the health of our families and the environment.
Everett offers free green gardening workshops to help community members garden more naturally. View or download our flyer, Green Home, Green Garden (PDF) for the latest program schedule. 2019 schedule coming soon.
To start green gardening today, view or download the guide, Natural Yard Care (PDF) and learn the 5 steps that will make your piece of the planet a healthier place to live.
Trees are an important tool for managing runoff. They provide a surface area that rain water can land on before it evaporates. They reduce erosion and promote infiltration of stormwater runoff. Refer to Everett's tree program webpage to learn more.
Sign-up for Everett's Green Home, Green Garden e-newsletter, contact Apryl Hynes, Public Information & Education Specialist, email.
The City of Everett, through its NPDES Municipal Stormwater Permit, is responsible for ensuring that all private stormwater drainage systems that are connected to the City’s municipal stormwater system are properly maintained and operated.
Commercial property owners, multifamily residential properties and owners of single family residential properties with privately maintained drainage and stormwater facilities are required by Everett Municipal Code 14.56.130 to maintain their stormwater facilities.
City inspectors will visit your property annually to bi-yearly to visually inspect stormwater facilities to assess their condition and identify required maintenance or repair. If any portion needs maintenance or repair the property owners will be notified by letter or email. The property owner is then responsible for completing the necessary maintenance within the time frame specified.
The City has prepared a list of firms providing drainage system maintenance services for reference.