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Tip #197

Turn down thermostat on water heater(s).

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Fort Collins Utilities is an equal opportunity residential and commercial utility service provider. We do not discriminate in the terms, conditions or provision of services based on race, color, religion, sex, disability, familial status or national origin.


Fort Collins Utilities es una empresa proveedora de servicios públicos residenciales y comerciales con igualdad de oportunidad. No discriminamos en los términos, las condiciones o la provisión de servicios en base a raza, color, religión, sexo, discapacidad, estatus familiar o nacionalidad de origen.

Management Program


Protecting Water Quality of Local Streams and Rivers

The City of Fort Collins storm sewer system is designed to prevent property flooding by quickly and efficiently transferring stormwater into local creeks, streams and the Poudre River. The stormwater system is separate from the sanitary sewer system, which transports wastewater from sinks, tubs and toilets in homes and businesses.

Unlike wastewater from the sewer system, stormwater is not treated to remove pollutants at a wastewater treatment plant before entering a waterway. As stormwater flows over streets, parking lots, sidewalks and building rooftops, it transports debris, chemicals, bacteria, sediment and other pollutants through the storm sewer system and into our local waterways.

To report illegal dumping or spills that are potentially life threatening or hazardous to the environment, call 911.

To report all other spills or illegal dumping of wastes into the storm sewer system, call 970.221.6700.

MS4 Permit

In 2003, the City received its first Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Permit and began implementation of the required Stormwater Management Program (PDF 183KB). This federally mandated program is administered by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Water Quality Control Division. Fort Collins is currently in its second permit term, 2008-2013.

The goal of the program is to reduce the amount of pollutants entering streams, creeks, lakes and rivers as a result of rain water and snowmelt from residential, commercial and industrial areas. The following six minimum control measures must be met:

  1. Public Education and Outreach:
    Educate residents and members of the business community to help reduce water quality impacts associated with pollutants in stormwater runoff.
  2. Public Participation/Involvement:
    Provide a mechanism and process to allow the public to review and provide input on the Stormwater Management Program.
  3. Illicit Detection and Elimination:
    Develop, implement and enforce a program to detect and eliminate spills, illegal dumping and other non-stormwater discharges into the City's storm sewer system.
  4. Construction Site Stormwater Runoff Control:
    Develop, implement and enforce a program to reduce discharge of pollutants in stormwater runoff from construction activities.
  5. Post-construction Site Stormwater Management:
    Prevent or minimize impacts to stormwater from new developments or redevelopments by ensuring that stormwater conveyance structures operate as designed and are maintained.
  6. Pollution Prevention/Good Housekeeping for Municipal Operations:
    Develop and implement an operation and maintenance program to prevent or reduce pollutants in runoff from municipal operations.

Related Links

For more information, contact Utilities.