Getting Involved


There are many ways for local businesses and citizens to get involved in stormwater protection. For more information, please contact your local municipal stormwater coordinator.

Adopt-a-Stream – EPA encourages the use of this popular nationwide effort, coordinated locally and often sponsored by area government or nonprofit agencies and organizations. Individuals and organizations can participate by dedicating time and resources to keeping a portion of a stream trash free. Volunteers also work with local officials to help inspect for pollution sources. Internet searches are the best way to find active Adopt-a-Stream projects in your area.

Cleanup Days – Many cities have special days dedicated to volunteer stream and roadside trash and litter cleanup. Typically the city provides the trash containers and disposal costs, and local organizations generate the volunteers and publicity.

Local Stormwater Committees – Many cities have established advisory committees. Volunteers from local businesses, organizations and citizens are asked to review planning ideas and offer suggestions on increasing local support for flood control and water quality projects, and help set priorities and disseminate information throughout the community.

School Education – Working with local municipal officials, volunteers visit elementary and middle schools to teach students about water quality protection. Blue Thumb has special teaching tools and a good deal of experience with school education programs. Some municipalities also conduct their own programs.

Stormdrain Marking – This involves placing markers or medallions on drop inlets with messages to not dispose of pollutants into the stormdrain. This is a popular program for youth groups, such as Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Camp Fire, and school clubs. Blue Thumb has an active program to assist municipalities with marking stormdrains.

Volunteer Monitoring – Groups of volunteers routinely perform chemical monitoring of local streams and ponds. They may also participate in biological monitoring and perform habitat assessments. The most prominent program in Oklahoma is Blue Thumb, but some communities may have similar local programs. This EPA website has information about volunteer water monitoring including directories, newsletters and guidance manuals.

Watershed Protection Organizations – Several cities in Oklahoma have or are developing a coordinated partnership of municipal officials, nonprofit organizations, local businesses and special districts to designate preservation areas. These frequently involve modifying local zoning codes and comprehensive plans, and creating special conservation districts or easements to protect special water resources.

Surf Your Watershed – For many years, this EPA website has hosted searchable maps with links to technical water quality data and local watershed information. EPA is presently updating the website which now states: “A replacement application is currently in development, with an expected release date of Fall 2019.  How’s My Waterway?, Version 2, will incorporate much of SYW's content and expand relevant watershed information. Please watch this page for periodic updates on How’s My Waterway? Version 2.”