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How Can You Help?

Faculty and Staff

The faculty and staff at NOVA have the responsibility to be good stewards of the campuses natural resources. Being mindful of how potential pollutants are handled and stored, can help successfully prevent stormwater pollution and improve the quality of water in our streams, lakes and rivers. The benefits of preventing stormwater pollution will be shared by each NOVA campus and NOVA as a whole.

Here are some suggestions that you can implement at NOVA. We hope that you will help us keep our waterways clean!

  1. When using chemical fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides, use them sparingly and follow the label directions carefully. Never apply fertilizers or pesticides when a heavy rain is forecast.
  2. Monitor the storm sewer system for illicit discharge. For more information: Illicit Discharges
  3. Recycle or properly dispose of used motor oil and other hazardous wastes. One quart of motor oil can contaminate up to two million gallons of water!
  4. Keep leaves, grass clipping, soaps, litter and harmful chemicals away from streets, ditches, storm drains and waterways. The added nutrients and toxins present in those products contribute to harmful algae blooms and fish kills
  5. Group plants by water needs to make watering more efficient.
  6. Make sure all of your students doing research have been trained in proper lab techniques and waste disposal. Make sure the students understand potential problems, which may arise as a result of chemical interactions or accidentally mixing the wrong chemicals.
  7. Keep up with the maintenance of campus equipment and vehicles. Catching leaks early prevents oil, antifreeze and other containments from spilling onto the ground and contaminating stormwater runoff.
  8. This brochure explains more about what an Illicit Discharge is, waht you can do to help prevent them and How to Report an Illicit Discharge if you see one.


Making a commitment to change through at least one habit change can result in benefits to our water resources that will be shared by the NOVA community and the NOVA community as a whole. We hope that you will implement our suggestions!

  1. Place litter, including cigarette butts, in trash receptacles. Never throw litter in streets or down storm drains.
  2. Make use of on grounds recycling programs.
  3. Report leaking faucets or running toilets to maintenance staff. Decreasing water usage, you can help prevent the sewer system from overloading and contaminating ground water and surface water.
  4. Get involved in the planning and zoning process in your community. That's where the decisions are made that shape the course of development and the future quality of our environment.
  5. Regular tune-ups and inspections can help keep automotive waste and byproducts from contaminating runoff.
  6. Participate in clean-up activities on campus and in the surrounding community.
  7. Write or call your elected representatives to inform them about your concerns and encourage legislation to protect water resources.
  8. Get involved in local planning and zoning decisions and encourage your local officials to develop erosion and sediment control ordinances.
  9. Form student groups to promote environmental education. Help educate people at NOVA and the surrounding community about ways in which they can protect water quality.
  10. This brochure explains more about what an Illicit Discharge is, waht you can do to help prevent them and How to Report an Illicit Discharge if you see one.