Stormwater Pollution Prevention Tips
Clean LA

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1 (888) CLEAN LA

Everyone can help keep Los Angeles clean and pollution free. Here are a few tips that can help protect our environment.
  • Don’t put anything in storm drains but rainwater. Storm drains and flood control channels carry surface runoff directly to the ocean or to groundwater supplies without treatment. Make sure that runoff carries only rainwater.

  • Avoid throwing litter into the street. Trash-laden gutters increase neighborhood pollution and clog storm drains causing street flooding and more traffic congestion.

  • Pick up after your pet. Animal waste, when left on the ground, washes down storm drains and contaminates beaches. Picking up dog waste is a County ordinance and dog owners disregarding this law may be fined.

  • Recycle your motor oil. There are more than 650 gas stations, auto parts stores and repair shops that will collect and recycle used motor oil. Call 1(888) CLEAN LA or visit to find the one nearest you.

  • Bag, compost or recycle grass, tree limbs, leaves and other yard waste. Soggy yard waste is a major contributor to clogged storm drains, street and neighborhood flooding.

  • Use yard waste as mulch, as natural fertilizer, or as ground cover. Nearly 20 percent of the waste buried in landfills is from our yards - like grass and tree trimmings.

  • Encourage local businesses to start a recycling program if they don’t already have one. Today's consumers take their business to companies that have an environmental conscience.

  • Use double-sided photocopies. You can cut down on paper costs and reduce waste by making double-sided originals and copies whenever possible.

  • Don't use harsh, abrasive or toxic chemicals around the house. Select water-based products over solvent-based products when available (e.g. paint, glue, shoe polish). Also, avoid aerosol sprays - choose a pump spray or other alternatives.

  • Clean up your yard. Have a bunch of old tires in your yard and don't know what to do with them? Call 1(888) CLEAN LA or visit to find the nearest tire recycling location and/or the date of the next tire waste amnesty event.

  • Make sure you “grasscycle.” You can save water, fertilizer and your back by GRASSCYCLING. Call 1(888) CLEAN LA or visit for more information.

  • Report illegal dumping. To report illegal dumping anytime, day or night,
    call 1 (888) CLEAN LA.

  • Keep sanitation workers safe. When thrown in with the regular trash, household hazardous waste can injure sanitation workers. In addition, landfills are not intended or permitted for those type of wastes which could impact groundwater. Call 1(888) CLEAN LA or visit to find out how to properly dispose of these materials.

  • Don’t flush, even if in a rush. When flushed down a toilet, sink or drain, household hazardous waste goes through the sewage system to treatment plants not equipped to handle hazardous waste. Call 1(888) CLEAN LA or visit to find out how to properly dispose of these materials.

  • Buy just what you need to do the job. Give leftover materials to a friend, neighbor, business or charity that can use them up.

  • Be smart when you apply pesticides or fertilizers. Do not apply pesticides or fertilizers before it rains. Not only will you lose most of the chemicals through runoff, but you will also harm the environment. Do not over-water after application. Read the label and do not apply more than is recommended.

  • Purchase re-refined motor oil for your vehicle. Re-refined oil has been recycled and then reprocessed so it is as good or better than virgin oil. By using re-refined motor oil, you are closing the recycling loop and saving natural resources.

  • Don’t do time. The illegal dumping of hazardous waste carries a minimum fine of $1,000 per day per violation up to $100,000 per day per violation and imprisonment.
For more information regarding stormwater pollution prevention, Los Angeles County residents are encouraged to call the County’s toll-free environmental hotline, 1(888) CLEAN LA, or visit The hotline and Web site allow residents to report illegal dumping and clogged catch basins, as well as receive information regarding stormwater pollution prevention, certified used oil recycling centers, smart gardening tips and Household Hazardous Waste and Electronic Waste Roundup events.