Pollution Prevention for Business

Property owners are responsible and liable for all pollutants leaving their property. Pollutants can be transported by stormwater, which can pick up contaminants on properties and run off into local storm drains and eventually into surface waters. 

Common pollutants generated at businesses include: 

  • Fats, oil, and grease from restaurants
  • "Dumpster juice" from a leaking dumpster
  • Trash, litter, and cigarette butts
  • Motor oil, antifreeze, and other automotive fluids
  • Pesticides, sand, and dirt associated with property management

The Boston Water and Sewer Commission (BWSC) prepared the attached brochure, Stormwater Management for Businesses. The BWSC suggests the following pollution prevention measures for businesses:

  • Proper disposal of all pollutants. If you are unsure as to how to dispose of certain material, consult the manufacturer or contact the MA Hazardous Waste Hotline for Businesses at 617-292-5898.
  • Provide neighborhood amenities such as trash bins and cigarette butt receptacles.
  • Keep public areas clean and well-swept to keep sediment and litter out of storm drains. 
  • Maintain solid waste containers and locate them away from storm drains. 
  • Install and maintain grease traps. Don't dump cooking oil or grease into sinks, floor drains, a dumpster, or a storm drain.
  • Dispose wash water properly and not down the storm drain. Wash water should be disposed into a janitorial sink or a floor drain connected to the sanitary sewer system. Wash water can carry pollutants including phosphorus into our water bodies.
  • Stencil storm drains to indicate that they lead to the ocean.