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Clean Water Starts With Me

Keeping our desert waterways clean starts with you. Every year, during the monsoon season, it is easy for stormwater runoff to pick up pollutants, such as grease, fertilizer, pesticide and trash, along the way and to deposit the contaminants in our fragile desert washes.

Keeping Our Water Clean

Learn how you can help protect the environment as a conscious commuter, neighbor, citizen or business by reading the following tips and applying them in your everyday lifestyle.

(Click on the topics below for more details, or here to show all details)

Be a Conscious Commuter

  • Keep your vehicle leak free
  • Properly dispose of oil and automotive fluids
  • Use commercial car washes
  • Use alternative transportation

Be a Good Neighbor


Be a Good Citizen

  • Don’t litter
  • Pick up after your pets
  • Practice good horse keeping
  • Harvest rainwater
  • Report Illegal Dumping
  • Clean up litter in the community
  • Plant trees


Make it Your Business

  • Keep company vehicles and parking lots free of leaking fluids
  • Do not clean equipment outside near stormdrains
  • Store chemicals appropriately
  • Use landscape chemicals sparingly
  • Harvest rainwater
  • Pick up trash on your property
  • Keep dumpsters closed and leak free
  • Recycle
  • Follow stormwater protocols at construction sites

Take the Clean Water Survey!

Spend a few brief minutes telling us what you know about stormwater pollution and the importance of clean water.


  • Clean Water Survey - Click here

Quick LInks

  • Find your local contact for presentations and questions on stormwater:  PDF or Word
  • To report environmental concerns, call 724-7400 or complete this online form.  Please be prepared with detailed information. Guidance is available here.


Common Stormwater Pollutants

Stormwater pollution occurs when stormwater runoff washes away loose sediment, chemicals, trash, pet waste or other pollutants. This water ends up in desert washes, basins or it can seep underground and adversely affect our fragile desert environment.

The following everyday products and materials can pollute our stormwater.

(Click on the pollutants for more details, or here to show all details)

  • Oil and engine fluids
  • Soap and residues from car washing
  • Litter
  • Pet waste
  • Household hazardous wastes and products
  • Fertilizers
  • Pesticides, herbicides and insecticides
  • Yard waste
  • Eroded Soil

Raising Awareness

Since dispersed pollutants are a leading concern in stormwater pollution, creating a healthy environment depends on each household and business doing its part to reduce contaminants. Pima Association of Governments’ Stormwater Management Working Group conducts a multi-media outreach campaign during the monsoon season annually to share awareness about the importance of preventing stormwater runoff from carrying contaminants to our fragile desert washes. 

The campaign, called “Clean Water Starts With Me” also helps member jurisdictions meet regulatory requirements, keeping stormwater quality safe for people and wildlife alike.  A shared message is important for addressing regional stormwater issues within the watershed in Pima County. 

Look for Clean Water Starts With Me on billboards, bus ads, local magazines, scoop the poop stickers and movie theater ads. On Facebook, you can follow posts about current events and other related entertaining information. PAG has distributed nearly 50,000 English and Spanish brochures since the program started in 2005. Our TV and radio ads reach approximately 800,000 people in the Tucson region annually.

The Working Group also conducts a seminar targeted to the construction industry. The seminar gives the construction industry an opportunity to learn about the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) permitting process, allowable and non-allowable discharges, best management practices for arid regions, and a chance to discuss stormwater issues with jurisdictional representatives.

Watershed Pocket Guide

This new guide, which folds up to fit in your pocket,  illustrates a comprehensive approach to understanding and protecting our watershed.  The graphic on the front provides a practical guide to stormwater pollution prevention and explains how water can pick up pollution as it flows to the fragile desert waterways. This map on the flip side provides a 3D birds-eye view of our region to help the reader get to know, explore, understand the water system and to reduce our human impact within the watershed.  The guide integrates watershed and natural heritage awareness with proactive ideas about how people can restore our vital natural resources.  Available at your public library or through PAG.

This PAG Watershed Guide is a new outreach product created by PAG's Watershed Planning Program.



LID Case Studies Inventory Map

Pima County Regional Flood Control District and the Low Impact Development Working Group created an inventory of award winning case study sites in the region that demonstrate excellence in designs that heal the watershed. Designs photos, costs and summaries are available in their inventory at

Create your own self guided tour! PAG created a LID Case Studies map which can be viewed through Avenza PDF Maps,  an offline map viewer for your mobile device. Import the free Tucson Bikeways map to display your live GPS location.
1. Download the free App
        Download PDF Maps on the App StoreAndroid app on Google Play

 2. Copy URL:
 3. Open PDF Maps app and go to Maps. Click on “+" to import map
 4. Paste URL to “From the Web” to import LID Case Studies Inventory Map. Enjoy!

Site information:

Get to Know Your Neighborhood Wash: They Are Ours to Protect!

One of the goals of "Clean Water Starts With Me!" is to aid the community stewardship of our valuable desert waterways. Click on the map to learn the names and locations of our local watersheds and nearest desert rivers. Share your knowledge with your neighbors to help decrease pollutant stress on our stormwater quality.

These maps were produced by TerraSystems Southwest for Watershed Management Group, using data from Pima County and the City of Tucson.

Campaign Awards & Accomplishments

The “Clean Water Starts With Me” campaign has received the following recognition: 

  • PAG contributed materials from the campaign to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Non-Point Source Outreach Toolbox as sample materials to help other communities develop effective targeted outreach campaigns for stormwater pollution prevention.
  • The campaign received a first-place award at the 2009 National Association of Flood and Stormwater Agencies’ (NAFSMA) conference. The “Excellence in Communication Award” was in the “Improvement in Water Quality” category. PAG coordinated with the Town of Oro Valley to submit the outreach program, which promotes stormwater pollution prevention. On Oct. 22, 2009, the Town accepted the trophy on behalf of PAG. NAFSMA represents more than 100 public agencies that conduct stormwater and flood management activities. The City of Tucson and Town of Oro Valley are members.

Outreach Materials



Activities for Children


Contact Info


Find your local contact for presentations and questions on stormwater:  PDF or Word


Clean Water Starts With Me - 2013 Partners

Pima Association of Governments is collaborating with these partners to increase awareness of the impact that stormwater pollution has on our desert watershed health. These partners compliment our outreach by providing on the ground opportunities to help make a difference.

The City of Tucson/Pima County Household Hazardous Waste program is managed by the City of Tucson Environmental Services Department. HHW conducts monthly collections on the 1st Saturday of each month, 8 a.m. to noon, at Eastside City Hall, 7575 E. Speedway Blvd. and also conducts a mobile collection on the 2nd Saturday of each month, 8 a.m. to noon. Visit for monthly information.

The main HHW site is located at 2440 W. Sweetwater Drive, Tucson, and is open from 8 a.m. to noon on Friday and Saturday. The service is free to residents of the City of Tucson and unincorporated Pima County. Residents of Oro Valley, Marana and Sahuarita will be charged a $5 fee.

The Los Reales Landfill site is located at 5300 E. Los Reales Road and is open 6:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday.

Several landfills throughout the region are also open more days of the week. They accept  a smaller selection of HHW items limited to Antifreeze, Batteries, Oil, and Paint and are open 3-6 days a week. For more information about these ABOP sites please visit the  HHW web site.

For more information, visit

Tucson Clean & Beautiful is an incorporated 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization with a variety of programs designed to improve our local environment in a cost-effective and socially responsible manner. Volunteer groups may Adopt-a-Street or Adopt-a-Wash through TCB’s Adopt a Park & Public Areas program. Over 700 streets, parks and washes are available. To learn more about adopting a street, wash or park, call (520) 837-6834 or email

Tucson Clean & Beautiful also runs the Trees for Tucson program to provide low cost shade trees program for your home, neighborhood, school or other public space. Over 80,000 trees have distributed since the Trees for Tucson program began in 1989 providing benefits such as stormwater runoff capture, erosion control, energy conservation, urban heat island mitigation, and improved habitat for wildlife and people alike. Find out how you may qualify for a discounted tree and plant it using rainwater harvesting techniques  here:

For more information, visit

Other Partners

Watershed Management Group

PAG is partnering with Watershed Management Group ( to connect with community–based, on-the-ground projects in Green Infrastructure. WMG offers workshops to learn how to build earthworks, a co-op program for discounted projects, opportunities to join neighborhood green streets projects, and access to free resources, such as rebate and grant opportunities and guidebooks.


Arizona Project Wet

By partnering with the Arizona Project Wet (APW) program (, we can reach the children in the community with STEM curriculum an state approved standards. Children also help public service announcements to reach new audiences by sharing with their families. APW’s student and teacher survey’s are enhancing the PAG outreach by providing measures for community awareness of outreach messages. The partnership is aiding APW by providing a sponsorship that will allow additional water festivals and teacher trainings to be held across eastern Pima County. APW is looking for teacher contacts in each jurisdiction, so let us know if you are interested.


Conserve to Enhance

Conserve2Enhance ( helps you track your water use over time, learn about where you have the most potential to save, and put your water savings to work supporting enhancement projects in your community! C2E features PAG's map of washes and tree canopy to help neighborhood identify appropriate opportunities for C2E green infrastructure enhancement grants.  PAG sits on the Board of C2E.


The Poo Guys

The Poo Guys ( dog waste removal consists of a weekly visit to your yard with precision to make sure every bit of waste is disposed of. Makes life easier for you!  This keeps your yards fresh and pretty while helping to prevent stormwater pollution by pathogens that can be present in pet waste.  The Poo Guys proudly  display our Clean Water Starts With Me!  and Clean Cities logos on their electric vehicles that they use to get from customer to customer across the Tucson region. This small local family business if off to a big start and helping us to spread the word about the importance of picking up where your dog left off for our stormwater quality.

©Pima Association of Governments | 1 E Broadway Blvd, Suite 401, Tucson, AZ 85701 | Telephone (520) 792-1093, FAX (520) 620-6981