National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES)

National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) is a permit program to control water pollution by regulating point sources that discharge pollutants into waters of the United States.

Polluted stormwater runoff is commonly transported through municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4), and then often discharged, untreated, into local water bodies. An MS4 is a conveyance or system of conveyances that is:

  • Owned by a state, city, town, village, or other public entity that discharges to waters of the U.S.
  • designed or used to collect or convey stormwater (e.g., storm drains, pipes, ditches)
  • not a combined sewer
  • not part of a sewage treatment plant, or publicly owned treatment works (POTW)

To prevent harmful pollutants from being washed or dumped into specific types of MS4, operators are required to obtain an NPDES permit and develop a stormwater management program plan (SMPP). The City of Highwood is an MS4 operator under the IEPA’s General Permit for Discharges.

A copy of the 2017 IEPA Notice of Intent can be found here: NOI Link (PDF)

City of Highwood Stormwater Management Program Plan: SMPP Link (PDF)

City of Highwood Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination Program: IDDE Link (PDF)

Report a Issue

Contact the City of Highwood regarding problems with drainage features or illegal dumping into the storm sewer system. You can report anonymously via email .

Climate change description and link: Climate change refers to any significant change in the measures of climate lasting for an extended period of time. Climate change includes major changes in temperature, precipitation, or wind patterns, among other effects, that occur over several decades or longer. As a requirement of the City’s general NPDES Permit ILR40, consideration of impacts and effects of climate change on storm water, storm water controls, flood management and BMP implementation. Visit the EPA’s climate change website.

Public Outreach

Protecting Water Quality from Urban Runoff (PDF)

Drainage Around Your Home (PDF)

After the Storm - A Citizen’s Guide to Managing Stormwater (PDF)

Lake County Homeowner’s Best Practices Page