Pollutants of Concern (POC)

The Stormwater division identifies pollutants of concern, POCS, based on illicit discharges that we receive. When a citizen calls in an illicit discharge the Stormwater Technicians investigate the cause and issue notices of violation, including fines, when necessary. We use this data to identify areas that have a high number of illicit discharges for our targeted educational outreach.

For more information about Illicit Discharges, visit our Code of Ordinances below:

Code of Ordinances

Here are the current POCs for commercial and residential areas.


Car Washes: Car washes that do not have proper storm drain protection measures in place pollute our waterways with dirt, oil, gas and soap. These pollutants impact the local wildlife in the creeks and pollute our drinking water. 

For more information about how to protect our storm drains at your mobile carwash, visit our fact sheet below:

Car Wash Fact Sheet 

For information about connecting to sanitary sewer please contact Joel Freeman at (336) 397-7621 or Email Joel 

Fats, Oils and Grease: Fats, oils, and grease (FOG) are a common commercial pollutant. Accidental oil spills or improper handling of cooking grease can end up in our storm drain, which ends up in our creeks. FOGs also clog pipes causing costly repairs and overflows.


For more information about how you can battle the "Grease Goblin", visit our fact sheet below:

FOGs Best Practices


Septic Tanks: Improperly managed septic tanks can allow sewage to seep into ground water, ending up in our streams and creeks. Leaking septic tanks release harmful bacteria into our drinking water sources. 

Septic tank systems do not work forever. If you are having problems with your septic tank system, take a look at the questions below. Answer them with “yes” or “no”; even if your answer is “sometimes”, still answer with a “yes”.

  • Is sewage or effluent being discharged from your septic tank system onto the surface of the ground, surface waters, or directly into the groundwater?
  • Is sewage or effluent backing up into your home, facility, drains, or septic tank?
  • Is there sewage or effluent within 3” of the finished grade over the septic tank system?
  • Is it necessary to have your septic tank pumped more than once per month to avoid answering “yes” to one or more of the above questions?

If you answered "yes" to any of the questions, you have a malfunctioning septic tank system.

*Please contact the Forsyth County Department of Public Health Environmental Health Section at (336)703-3225 or visit our website at https://www.forsyth.cc/PublicHealth/EnvironmentalHealth

For more information about septic tanks visit the links below:

Septic General Info 

Septic Tank FAQ

Erosion: Erosion happens when water, wind or debris moves soil, gravel and natural resources.  This creates unstable ground leading to mudslides, channels and sink holes. Sediment is the number one pollutant in North Carolina. 


An easy option for helping control erosion and create a stable soil bed is planting native plants. Not only do native plants help stabilize the soil they also provide a beautiful backdrop that is beneficial to wildlife and easy to maintain. Another great option is a rain barrel. Rain barrels collect rain from your roof into a container that can be used to water your garden. 

For information about native planting for erosion control visit our links below:

Native Plant List 

Erosion Control with Native Plants

Rain Barrel DIY

Natural Yard Care