Our Homes and Streams are Connected

This page describes how to keep our waterways healthy by correctly disposing of unclean run-off and stormwater around the house.

 How you can save our waterways

Only rain and clean tap  water should go down your outside drains.

Outside drains, roofs and road gutters are directly connected to waterways, estuaries and the beach, so we need to be careful how we dispose of our unclean run-off.

Please follow the guidelines below.

Note: All of these chemicals are deadly to fish, whatever the dilution.

Tips for run-off disposal from home

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Toxic Very ToxicExtremely Toxic
  • Run-off from washing your car
  • Any litter (including pet litter)
  • Cleaning chemicals
  • Run-off from driveway and roof cleaning*
    (even environmentally friendly chemicals)
  • Water from cleaning water-based paint brushes*
    (even environmentally friendly paints)
  • Emptying a chlorinated swimming pool
    (book a time with the Council first)
  • Solvents
  • Oil and fuel
  • Chemical concentrates
  • Left over paint and glues
  • Concrete wash*
 How should I dispose of these?  How should I dispose of these?  How should I dispose of these?

Divert or sweep onto grass –

the water can be filtered by plants and soil layers.

Ensure it is well diluted and drain into a laundry sink or toilet

(inside drains go to the sewage system).

Ensure it is not leaking, seal in a suitable container

and take to your local resource recovery centre.

For containers with residual chemicals follow the

hazardous waste process.

Read more about hazardous waste


* Disconnect your downpipes for any roof  cleaning.

* Check paint store websites for ways

to clean paint brushes  safely.

*Seal off drains and divert onto garden.


Clean streams are our choice

To report spills or pollution incidents phone the local Council (24 hrs): 03 543 8400 (Tasman)  03 546 0200 (Nelson)