Public Education

The City of East Lansing, in cooperation with the Greater Lansing Regional Committee (GLRC) has developed and maintained a public education plan (PEP) throughout the 2006 to 2013 MDEQ General Permitting cycle as well as under its 2013 to Current MDEQ Individual NPDES Permitting cycle.  The purpose of the PEP is to develop a systematic approach for informing East Lansing residents and businesses of their impact on the water quality of the Red Cedar River and Looking Glass River watersheds.

The template for the PEP has been a product of the GLRC’s PEP Committee and has resulted in a uniform document for all GLRC communities to use and tailor to their specific needs.  The PEP has been periodically reviewed updated and approved by MDEQ at each permitting cycle and as the objectives of the overall Stormwater Management Program have progressed. 

The most recent Master Public Education Plan dated August 2018 (PDF) was submitted to MDEQ as part of the City’s renewal for its 2020 MDEQ MS4 Permit.

Education Objectives

The City has committed to pursuing educational efforts focusing on ten objectives.  Some of the specific activities undertaken by the City in regards to each of the ten objectives are as follows:

1. Promote Public Responsibility and Stewardship in the Applicant’s Watershed.

    • Maintain the City of East Lansing’s “Stormwater Pollution Prevention” webpage.
    • Establish and maintain watershed signage along roadways as you enter each watershed.
    • Provide/distribute the GLRC “Do You Know Your Watershed” brochure.
    • Promote and support the Mid-Michigan Environmental Action Council’s (Mid-MEAC) volunteer stream monitoring efforts.
    • Utilize the City’s “We All Live in a Watershed” educational display at various locations and events throughout the City.

2. Inform and Educate the Public about the Connection of the MS4 to Area Water bodies and the Potential Impacts Discharges Could Have on Surface Waters of the State.

    • Support the development and continuous improvements to the GLRC’s webpages entitled “Stormwater Basics” and “What’s a Watershed”.
    • Support the publication of GLRC’s quarterly newsletters and annual reports and distribute to community leaders.

3. Educate the Public on Illicit Discharges and Promote Public Reporting of Illicit Discharges and Proper Disposal of Materials into the MS4.

    • Maintain information on the GLRC’s and City’s websites on what is an illicit discharge and how to report it.

4. Promote Preferred Cleaning Materials and Procedures for Car, Pavement and Power Washing.

    • Continue to provide access to brochures and other materials regarding car washing, pet waste, motor oil, and fertilizer reduction.

5. Inform and Educate the Public on Proper Application and Disposal of Pesticides, Herbicides, and Fertilizers.

    • Maintain the City’s Best Management Practices regarding the use of pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers on City properties.

6. Promote Proper Disposal Practices for Grass Clippings, Leaf Litter, and Animal Wastes that May Enter into the MS4.

    • Provide/distribute GLRC brochures and materials related to proper disposal of grass clippings and leaf litter.
    • Promote proper disposal of pet wastes and maintain signage at City parks.

7. Identify and Promote the Availability, Location and Requirements of Facilities for Collection or Disposal of Household Hazardous Waste, Travel Trailer Sanitary Wastes, Chemicals, Yard Wastes, and Motor Vehicle Fluids.

    • Promote local household hazardous waste collection and recycling events held by the Ingham County Health Department.
    • Continuing promoting and holding the City’s annual “Recycle East Lansing” event.
    • Continue to promote and provide curbside pickup of yard wastes including special free pickup dates.

8. Inform and Educate the Public on Proper Septic System Care and Maintenance, and How to Recognize System Failure.

    • Provide access to GLRC’s brochure on proper septic system care.

9. Educate the Public on, and Promote the Benefits of, Green Infrastructure and Low Impact Development.

    • Provide/distribute GLRC’s brochures and other materials on Green Infrastructure and Low Impact Development.
    • Promote access to WKAR’s “Greening Mid-Michigan” 27 minute video.

10. Identify and Educate Commercial, Industrial, and Institutional Entities Likely to Contribute Pollutants to Stormwater Runoff.

    • Support GLRC’s efforts to educate the business community on MS4 and pollution prevention and what they can do.

Public Education Publications

The GLRC has developed numerous brochures, guides, quarterly newsletters, annual reports and many other educational materials for homeowners, educators and municipalities. Visit the GLRC website and click on resources

In addition, the city utilizes many of the Pollution Isn’t Pretty materials along with it’s “We All Live in a Watershed” display in public buildings, schools and other events.

Continued Improvements

The City of East Lansing in conjunction with the GLRC Public Education Committee will continue to advance and improve on our efforts to educate our residents on the importance of our watersheds to our community.  Together we can stop water pollution at the source.