Urban stormwater management in the Monterey Bay region

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Integrated Regional Water Management Plan (IRWMP) for the Greater Monterey County. Map Provided by Central Coast Wetlands Group[1]


Urban stormwater management is quickly gaining the attention of the public and decision makers in the Monterey Bay Region. The Monterey Regional Management Storm Water Management Program (MRSWMP) was developed to "implement and enforce a series of management practices, referred to herein as 'Best Management Practices' (BMPs)." [2] The MRSWP's goal is to minimize surface runoff pollutants[3] from entering areas of biological significance in the Monterey Bay. Efforts are being taken to reduce stormwater runoff using a multitude of methods.

Phase I Monterey Bay Region Municipalities

Phase I regulations, effective since 1990, require NPDES permits for storm water discharges for certain specific industrial facilities and construction activities, and for “medium” and “large” municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4s) generally serving populations greater than 100,000. [4]

  1. Salinas Cite error: Closing </ref> missing for <ref> tag
    1. Management Program
    2. Waste Discharge Requirements

Phase II [2]

In December 1999, the EPA promulgated more regulations known as the Storm Water Phase II Final Rule for all MS4s with urbanized areas and municipalities with a population base greater than 10,000 with a population density greater than 1,000 persons per square mile, and includes construction sites of 1 to 5 acres. In California, the NPDES General Permit for small MS4s is overseen by the Regional Water Quality Control Board (RWQCB) and requires the development of a management plan that discusses existing and proposed programs that will protect water quality by reducing or eliminating pollutant runoff from entering local water bodies. [5]

Individual cites

Basin Plan 1994 adopted by the Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board applies to the following cities:

  1. Watsonville [6]
    • Annual review of the Storm Water Management Plan's (SWMP) effectiveness, BMPs effectiveness and improvement opportunities to achieve the Maximum Extent Practicable (MEP) are required under Phase II permit requirements.
  1. Hollister [7]
  2. Gilroy [8]

Monterey [9]

King City [10]

Sand City [11]

Soledad [12]

Group with small municipalities

  1. Monterey Regional Storm Water Management Program (MRSWMP) [2]
    1. Cities
      1. Monterey
      2. Carmel-by-the-Sea
      3. Del Rey Oaks
      4. Sand City
      5. Seaside
      6. Marina
      7. Pacific Grove
      8. Monterey County
    2. Annual Reports:
      1. Year 1 (2006-2007)[13]
      2. Year 2 (2007-2008)[14]
      3. Year 3 (2008-2009)[15]
      4. Year 4 (2009-2010)[16]
  2. Integrated Regional Water Management Plan (IRWMP)[17]
    1. Entities Included:
      1. government agencies
      2. nonprofit organizations
      3. educational organizations
      4. water service districts
      5. private water companies
      6. organizations representing:
        1. agricultural
        2. environmental
        3. community interests

Resource/s at Stake

  1. Endangered species[18]
  2. Areas of Special Biological Significance (ASBS)[19]
  3. Marine Ecosystems[20]

Stakeholders [21]

  • California American Water Monterey Bay Citizen Watershed Monitoring Network
  • California Coastal Commission Monterey County Service Area 50
  • California Coastal Conservancy Monterey Peninsula Regional Park District
  • California Department of Fish and Game NOAA Fisheries
  • California State University Monterey Bay Pebble Beach Community Service District
  • California State Water Resources Control Board Pebble Beach Company
  • Carmel Area Wastewater District Planning and Conservation League
  • Carmel River Steelhead Association Regional Water Quality Control Board
  • Carmel River Watershed Conservancy Resources Conservation District of Monterey County
  • Carmel Unified School District Seaside Basin Watermaster
  • Carmel Valley Association State Department of Parks & Recreation
  • City of Carmel-by-the-Sea Surfrider Foundation
  • City of Del Rey Oaks The Nature Conservancy
  • City of Pacific Grove The Watershed Institute at CSUMB
  • City of Sand City U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  • City of Seaside U.S. Fish and Wildlife Serve
  • Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Ventana Wilderness Society

Laws, Policies, and Regulations

  1. Porter-Cologne Act [22]
  2. Clean Water Act [23]
  3. Endangered Species Act [24]
  • Proposition 50 [25]


... What elements of the biophysical system are/were involved?...


  • Low Impact Development(LIDs)[26]
  • Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) [26]


Future Research

  • Possible Thesis topic: Effectiveness of management efforts[29]
  • Continuous monitoring[30]
  • Best management practices (BMPs) to be the most effective


  1. http://www.google.com/imgres?um=1&hl=en&safe=off&client=firefox-a&sa=N&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&authuser=0&biw=984&bih=896&tbm=isch&tbnid=ZueC1Ho9QWDebM:&imgrefurl=http://ccwg.mlml.calstate.edu/irwmp&docid=pbcs6kplT6qNkM&imgurl=http://ccwg.mlml.calstate.edu/sites/default/files/images/region_map1.preview.jpg&w=480&h=640&ei=7edzT-uGLK-E2QWLiOXFBg&zoom=1&iact=hc&vpx=749&vpy=131&dur=615&hovh=259&hovw=194&tx=137&ty=121&sig=102689191159301866187&page=1&tbnh=162&tbnw=121&start=0&ndsp=18&ved=1t:429,r:4,s:0
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 http://www.swrcb.ca.gov/water_issues/programs/stormwater/swmp/monterey_swmp.pdf
  3. TMDLs in the Monterey Bay Region of California
  4. http://hollister.ca.gov/site/Documents/SWMPfinalone.pdf
  5. http://hollister.ca.gov/site/Documents/SWMPfinalone.pdf
  6. link.com
  7. link.com
  8. link.com
  9. link.com
  10. link.com
  11. link.com
  12. link.com
  13. http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/rwqcb3/water_issues/programs/stormwater/muni_phase2/monterey_co/2007_MR_yr1_AR_body.pdf
  14. http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/rwqcb3/water_issues/programs/stormwater/muni_phase2/monterey_co/2008_MR_yr2_AR_body.pdf
  15. link.com
  16. http://www.ci.pg.ca.us/Y4%20Annual%20Report%20Exec%20Summary.pdf
  17. http://ccwg.mlml.calstate.edu/irwmp
  18. link.com
  19. link.com
  20. link.com
  21. http://www.mpwmd.dst.ca.us/Mbay_IRWM/RAP.pdf
  22. http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/laws_regulations/docs/portercologne.pdf
  23. http://www.epa.gov/npdes/pubs/cwatxt.txt
  24. http://epw.senate.gov/esa73.pdf
  25. http://www.cdph.ca.gov/services/funding/Documents/Prop50/General/Proposition50.pdf
  26. 26.0 26.1 http://stuff.mit.edu/afs/sipb/project/wine/dosdevices/z:/mit/lugia/MacData/afs.cron/project/urban-sustainability/Stormwater_Sarah%20Madden/References/Roy_etal_2008.pdf
  27. link.com
  28. link.com
  29. link.com
  30. link.com


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