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Thornbury Township Stormwater Management

Thornbury Township (PAI130517) Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Public Meeting Information

DEP/Water Quality Contact Info        
DEP Website    

DEP 24 Hour Water Quality Hotline


484-250-5900, 1-800-541-2050


Anytime, including evenings and weekends

DEP Water Quality Complaints – Weekdays




Weekdays 8:00AM to 4:00PM

Off site discharge of sediment, erosion, & otherimproper controls during construction


Delaware Co. Conservation District:  610-892-9484


Send photo, full address,
and directions

Clogged orleaking sanitary sewer lines; sewage smell in creek;  illegal discharges into creeks or storm drains


Your municipality


After hours call 911

Fish Kills


First Call - DEP - 484-250-5900; Second Call - PA Fish & Boat Commission - 717-626-0228


DEP 24 Hour Water Quality Hotline  484-250-5900


Your municipality


Broken water mains


ChesterWater Authority 610-876-8181


24 hour

Broken water mains


Aqua Pennsylvania 610-525-1402


24 hour


Non-emergency environmental complaints can also be submitted online at  These complaints will be addressed by DEP’s regional service representative.  For emergencies use the 24 hour DEP hotline at 484-250-5900.


The Value of Fallen Wood to a Healthy Environment

Coarse woody debris (CWD) is a term used for fallen dead trees A dead standing tree is known as a snag. Up to 40% of all forest-dwelling animals are dependent on CWD.  Colonizing organisms that live on the remains of dead trees aid decomposition and themselves become food for predators, and so continue the chain of life in the forest.

CWD decomposition recycles nutrients that are essential for living organisms, including carbon, nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus.  Certain fungi, bacteria and insects consume dead wood, releasing nutrients by converting them into other forms of organic matter that are then consumed by other organisms.

Stormwater and carbon sequestration - Trees store atmospheric carbon in their wood using photosynthesis.  Once the trees die, fungi and other organisms transfer some of the carbon from CWD into the soil.  Soil carbon sequestered in this way can last for hundreds of years.  CWD stabilizes soils by slowing downslope movement of organic matter and mineral soil, slows evaporation of soil moisture, and provides damp microhabitats for moisture-loving organisms.

Habitat for plants and animals - Some plants grow out of or against large fragments of CWD; down woody material that provides such habitat are called nurse logs.  Nurse logs can provide shade, support, and nutrients to seedlings. Animals dependent on CWD and snags for habitat include salamanders, birds and small mammals.  One third of all woodland birds live in the cavities of dead tree trunks.  Woodpeckers, tufted titmice, Carolina chickadees, owls and some bats live in dead trees.  CWD in streams provides shelter for fish, amphibians and mammals.  However, large log jams can cause stream bank erosion and should be reduced in size to restore normal stream flow.

Let’s “Pick it Up” for Safer Recreation and Cleaner Water - Citizens can help report violations or problems they notice in their local streams before they cause more damage and pollution.  You may be the first to recognize “illicit”, nonpermitted discharges – typically any flows other than rainwater- being directed into storm sewers or out of pipes into streams.  “Dry weather flows”, defined as flows from stormwater outfall pipes after a 48 hour period without rain, should also be reported to your municipality for further investigation.

Stormwater Management Information

NPDES Permit Program Basics
This section of this website contains basic information on the major features and elements of the NPDES permit program. The information in this section will be most useful to state and tribal officials, interested citizens, and others with an interest in the details of the NPDES program. This information is broadly applicable to all NPDES permits and programs, including
EPA Home, EPA A-Z Index, EPA NPDES, Stormwater Programs, EPA Municipal Stormwater, and EPA SW BMP Menu.

EPA Stormwater Program Overview
Stormwater runoff is generated when precipitation from rain and snowmelt events flows over land or impervious surfaces and does not percolate into the ground. As the runoff flows over the land or impervious surfaces (paved streets, parking lots, and building rooftops), it accumulates debris, chemicals, sediment or other pollutants that could adversely affect water quality if the runoff is discharged untreated. The primary method to control stormwater discharges is the use of best management practices (BMPs). In addition, most stormwater discharges are considered point sources and require coverage under an NPDES permit. For more information about the Stormwater program, visit the Stormwater Basic Information page.  More....

The EPA Nonpoint Source Outreach Toolbox provides an abundance of examples of educational/outreach and survey/evaluation materials from across the country.

EPA MS4 Overview
Polluted stormwater runoff is commonly transported through Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4s), from which it is often discharged untreated into local waterbodies. To prevent harmful pollutants from being washed or dumped into an MS4, operators must obtain a NPDES permit and develop a stormwater management program.

DEP Stormwater Management Program
The Bureau of Watershed Management's mission is to restore and protect Pennsylvania's watersheds through: proper planning and management of water resources and their uses; reducing the impacts of nonpoint sources of pollution on water resources; regulating activities for soil conservation and waterway and wetlands protection;forming partnerships and building local capacity to restore and protect water resources, including drinking water sources; and educating Pennsylvania citizens about watersheds and watershed management. 

The National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Phase II stormwater program requires that Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4s) address the six required elements contained in the federal regulations to reduce water pollution:

The DEP homepage is  On the homepage, selecting “Site Map” from the right side margin will cause many topic links to appear.  Users can always use the “Search” option to find information.  On the Site Map, Stormwater/MS4 information is located about 2/3 the way down.   

Stormwater information can be located by selecting the “Businesses” tab along the top of the homepage, then the “Water” tab, then the “Bureau of Point and Non-Point Source Management” tab, then the “Stormwater Management” tab, and the Municipal Stormwater tab.

Water Quality Standards information (e.g., TMDLs, designated uses, impaired waters, etc.) can be located from the “Bureau of Point and Non-Point Source Management” tab, then the “Water Quality Standards” tab.  At this site, users can view the 2014 Pennsylvania Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Report

For access to DEP GIS tools such as eMapPA, select “Data and Tools” from the DEP homepage, then “GIS” (eMapPA is also available by selecting “Tools”). 

For access to the DEP eLibrary system, select “Citizens” from the DEP homepage, then “Public Records and Documents”.

The StormwaterPA site provides useful information about stormwater runoff and management, including videos and information on stormwater best practices.  

The Temple – Villanova Sustainable Stormwater Initiative maintains a regional Stormwater BMP database.  




There are many different ways to help manage stormwater. The link leads to information on how homeowners can install stormwater best management practices (BMPs). BMPs are methods for reducing and infiltrating stormwater runoff, a process through which the water is filtered by plants and permeates through the soil before it reaches our streams. These actions can greatly slow and reduce the volume of runoff generated by impervious surfaces.