Stormwater Management

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When rain falls on hard, impervious surfaces like roads, parking lots, and roofs, it can't soak in and instead creates stormwater runoff. As it travels, runoff picks up pollutants like pet waste, litter, yard waste, fertilizer, oil, and even soil or other types of sediment before entering the nearest storm drain.  

Many people think that stormwater drains lead to local wastewater treatment plants- this is a common misconception.  While water used in households is transported to wastewater treatment plants, water that runs down our storm drains flows directly to the closest stream, river, or lake and eventually to the Atlantic Ocean.  

The majority of water pollution in North Carolina is caused by polluted stormwater runoff. Since we rely on water for drinking, swimming, fishing, and growing food,  it is important that we all take steps to protect our water resources.  To find out more about stormwater and what you can do to protect our creeks and streams, watch the video to the right, explore the links on this website, and/or contact us.  

Upcoming EventS ANd Volunteer Programs

Join us on iNaturalist for Bingo by the Creek! 

This project features 16 water-related species in each of these 6 regions : Alamance County, Davidson County, Forsyth County, Guilford County, Randolph County, Rockingham County, and Greater NC (all other counties).  Try to find them all and win cool prizes along the way! Everyone in NC in invited, so feel free to share with friends and family members- See you by the creek!

To Participate:
1. Download the iNaturalist app
2. Create a free account
3. Search "[your county] bingo by the creek" and click "join"
4. Explore your local waterways and upload what you find!


 More details here: If you have any questions or experience any problems at all, please email 

CAUTION: If you go to a public park or waterway, please remember to look for hazards and follow CDC guidelines for protection against Covid-19. Stay safe, learn, and have fun! 


As North Carolina moves to reopen, the City of Burlington has reviewed and approved for some outdoor programs to begin again. If you are interested in participating in any of these activities, please familiarize yourself with the new safety protocols that are in place to safe guard the health of participants and staff against COVID-19.  For complete details on the City's response and current park and facility openings/closures, click here.   

For current Get Hiking! and Kayak Programs, click here.

NC Stream Watch

Training available by request.

If you like to learn and do, NC Stream Watch is for you!   Learn about water quality and put your local stream on the map!  NC Stream Watch participants adopt a section of a local stream or creek and commit to two brief assessments and cleanups over the course of one year. Contact Danica Heflin with our education partner, Stormwater SMART at (336)904-0300 or email to learn more or schedule a training.

Contact Us

The City of Burlington is a federally designated NPDES Phase II community.  We received an Individual Stormwater Permit July 1, 2005 from the NCDENR-DWQ.  Under this permit, the Stormwater Division is charged with working with Burlington residents, employees, businesses, and developers to keep the stormwater runoff in Burlington as clean as possible before it enters our streams and lakes.  We also get help from multiple departments including Engineering, Planning, Inspections, and Streets.

  • To report specific stormwater or stream related concerns, please use the Burlington Connected program by either filling out an online request form or calling (336) 222-5024.  We respond to each request.
  • For additional information or to learn more about volunteer opportunities, please contact the Stormwater Division of the Water Resources Department at (336) 222-5091 or email.