The City of Lenoir provides stormwater management services for Caldwell County and all municipalities in the county, including Lenoir. Stormwater Management is a common term that refers to the United States Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES).

Stormwater Permits

Stormwater Permits are available on the Permits and Applications page.

Clean Water Act & NPDES

Created in 1972 by the Clean Water Act, the NPDES permit program is authorized to state governments by EPA to perform many permitting, administrative, and enforcement aspects of the program. The purpose of the NPDES permit program is to address water pollution by regulating point sources that discharge pollutants to waters of the United States.

The NPDES Phase II Municipal Stormwater permit for Lenoir and surrounding municipalities was issued in 2009 by the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality Division of Water Resources.

The permit requires that all affected municipalities create and implement a Stormwater Management Program (SWMP) which addresses six required program elements that collectively result in significant reductions of pollutants discharged into water bodies. The six program elements, also known as "minimum control measures," include:

  1. Public Education and Outreach
  2. Public Involvement and Participation
  3. Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination
  4. Construction Site Run-Off Controls
  5. Operate Post Construction Stormwater Facilities
  6. Pollution Prevention and Good Housekeeping

Stormwater Runoff

Stormwater runoff occurs when precipitation from rain or snowmelt flows over the ground. Impervious surfaces like driveways, sidewalks, and streets prevent stormwater runoff from naturally soaking into the ground.

Stormwater in Caldwell County

Stormwater Runoff in Caldwell County ultimately ends up in the Catawba River. The City of Lenoir and Towns of Granite Falls, Hudson, Cajah's Mountain, Sawmills and Gamewell all maintain stormwater systems that direct surface runoff to tributaries of the Catawba Watershed.