watershed diagram

Our daily activities affect the health of the watershed. Being aware of the importance of the Pinellas County watersheds and our direct connection to them is the first step. Changing the way we do everyday tasks and activities is easy and helps protect our waterways and helps to educate the rest of the community. This is such an important issue because every area in Pinellas County is located in a watershed. Watershed Brochure


 Make a difference!

If you live in Pinellas County you live in a watershed.

pinellas county watershed map

Just like human waste, pet waste poses a threat to both public health and water quality. It contributes harmful bacteria that can make people sick, as well as excessive nutrients that cause algal blooms to rob the water of oxygen needed to support fish and other aquatic life. You can help! Pick up after your pet, never put waste down storm drains, and spread the word! When you cut the grass, leave the clippings on your lawn. This is part of maintaining a healthy lawn, using the principles of Florida Friendly Landscaping. When grass clippings are left on the street, driveway or sidewalk, they wash into stormdrains and become excessive nutrients in our waterways, leading to algae blooms and fish kills. Fertilizers also cause water quality problems. In addition to keeping clippings off the concrete, it is important to follow Pinellas County’s fertilizer ban.

If you work in Pinellas County you work in a watershed.

Taking a cigarette break during the workday is an opportunity to make a difference by ensuring everyone’s discarded cigarettes are put in an ashtray that is properly disposed of on a regular basis. You can also find an alternative to throwing cigarette butts out of the window as you drive. The cigarette butts are carried by rainwater to the nearest stormdrain, or it is washed directly into a swale, drainage ditch, pond, lake or bay. Cigarettes are not biodegradable. They are unsightly and pollute roadways, beaches and waterways.

If you play in Pinellas County you play in a watershed.

Playing soccer, baseball and other outdoor sports is a great way to maintain a healthy lifestyle and to enjoy the fun of sports. It is also a great time to coach children – and for children to coach adults – about proper trash disposal. Snack bags, juice boxes and plastic straw holders belong in the trash. If recreational facilities do not make trash cans accessible, bring a plastic garbage bag along for a team cleanup. Collect plastic bottles separately and recycle them. Remember, practice makes perfect!

Report pollution
If you see someone polluting, let them know that they are polluting our watershed and that what they do really does make a difference. You can also let us know by emailing us at watershed@pinellascounty.org.You can also call us at (727) 464-4425. Please note that all emails are subject to public records requests

It’s the law!
Pinellas County Code  prohibits dumping of any hazardous waste including chemicals, oil, sewage and yard waste, into the separate stormwater system or to any water bodies in the county. Fines of up to $10,000 per violation plus cleanup costs can be levied.

Water Quality Studies:

A watershed is the land area from which water flows into a stream, lake or bay. The County plans to develop a Watershed Management Plan for each of its drainage basins. These watershed plans guide the County in protecting and managing environmental resources, achieving improvements in water quality in the waters of the county and providing flood protection when needed. These plans span over the course of several years.



Total Maximum Daily Loads Program (TMDL): Improving Water Quality

Under the Federal Clean Water Act , surface waters of the United States must be evaluated to ensure they’re in good health.  Any body of water that is deemed impaired (or unhealthy) based on specific criteria must be improved, using a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) issued by the state or federal government. Visit the Regulatory Programs page for more information.