Frequently Asked Questions
The Yellow Fish Road program is a stormwater pollution prevention program with one simple message, that anything entering the storm drain flows directly to the local waterbody untreated. Program participants paint yellow fish next to storm drians and distribute fish-shaped brochures, so that residents know that only rainwater goes down the stormdrain.
In most cities, water from storm drains connects directly to the local waterbody untreated. So anything that runs off our lawns, driveways, sidewalks and roads can end up in the local waterbody, like litter, salt, soap, pesticide, herbicide and fertilizer. These wastes and chemicals can have a negative impact on the aquatic ecosystem, not only by harming fish and wildlife, but reducing drinking water quality for humans.
Almost anything other than clean rainwater will be harmful to the fish. This includes soap used to wash cars in the driveway, excess fertilizer, pesticide and herbicide spread onto lawns, dog feces left on the ground, oil and car fluids leaking onto roads, as well as construction and landscape debris from yards. Pollution not only affects fish, but plants, bugs and other wildlife using the water.
People often do not realize that storm drains flow untreated to the local waterbody, not to the wastewater treatment plant. One third of all Canadians do not know that simple activities such as washing your car in the driveway allows soap to enter the storm drains causing harm or death to aquatic life. With growing cities, even small amounts of pollution from each citizen can add up in the local waterbody.
Most municipalities have by-laws stating that only clean water is allowed to enter storm drains. Depending on the municipality, violators of a stormwater by-law can be fined a dollar amount or be imprisoned or both.