10. Stormwater Pond

This is stop #10, highlighting the ELC’s Stormwater Pond. 


The body of water in front of you is a Stormwater Pond.


When it rains, stormwater from our campus runs off the adjacent parking lot and upland areas.


This freshwater pond cleans that water.  Pollutants settle to the bottom of the pond and clean freshwater remains at the surface.  During heavy rains, the pond discharges cleaner surface water into the Indian River Lagoon. 


Luckily at the ELC our biggest concern is just sediment and parking lot debris; we don’t need to use any chemicals to maintain our native landscape.


However, in general, stormwater ponds do clean fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, dog waste and trash out of polluted waters. 


Dogs produce about a pound of waste per day which accumulates in our local waterways bringing bacteria, parasites, viruses and excess nutrients.  An estimated 84 tons of dog waste is left on the ground each day in the Indian River Lagoon region.  Dog waste must always be picked up. 

Nutrient runoff from one pound of fertilizer can trigger 500 lbs worth of algal blooms which compete with seagrass for sunlight.  


Many communities within the lagoon watershed are passing strong fertilizer ordinances.  Reduce your fertilizer needs by incorporating native plants into your own yard.  All of the plants at the ELC are native Florida plants that need little care and attract native wildlife.  Look around and get some ideas!


And, of course, trash must be disposed of properly.  If left on the ground, trash is carried by stormwater into our waterways.  Marine debris often entangle or are eaten by wildlife, causing sickness and death. 


To heal the Lagoon, make behavior changes to positively impact water quality.