Muddy Water Watch

As our watershed continues to be developed at an alarming rate, the Haw and its tributaries are facing the negative impacts of sediment pollution. Increased development means an increase in construction stormwater runoff, which is the leading water pollution problem in the nation, according to a 2008 report from the E.P.A.

Construction stormwater runoff carries sediment, debris, chemicals, and bacteria which are harmful to humans and aquatic habitat.

The Muddy Water Watch is an initiative to reduce stormwater runoff from construction sites. Partnering with county Sediment and Erosion Control programs, Haw River Assembly provides training, materials, and the tools necessary for volunteers to properly identify and report sediment and erosion control violations.

Taking Action

After receiving training from the Haw Riverkeeper and county officials, volunteers will monitor, record, and report on potential sediment and erosion control violations at constructions site through a user-friendly smartphone application, free in the app store. Find the app, instructions, and reviews here. Reports are sent directly to the Haw Riverkeeper, and the Sediment and Erosion Control Officials in the county.

In the training, volunteers will learn how to identify sediment pollution, failed sediment and erosion controls, and how to have a lasting and effective impact on water quality through monitoring and reporting construction stormwater pollution.

Goals of the Project

  • Gain a clearer picture of the problems in our watershed
  • Gather data needed for better laws and enforcement to minimize construction stormwater pollution
  • Empower citizens to protect their creeks and the Haw River

Training Schedule

Training programs will be held in order of public interest. We are happy to train individuals and groups if you are interested in the following counties; Alamance, Guilford, Wake, Durham, Orange, Chatham, and Rockingham. If you are interested in participating in the project, please contact

Supplemental Training Material

General Information

Erosion and Sediment Control Planning and Design Manual
This manual is broken into eight chapters and explains the procedures and practices in great detail.

Stormwater Best Management Practices Manual
Use this for images of examples of successful Stormwater BMPs and stormwater ordinances.

General Permit Information/ National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NCG01000)
Division of Water Quality Fact Sheet on Discharging Stormwater for Construction Activities

NC Surface Waters Classification Map
Watershed Classifications determine water quality standards and protections. It is possible to get listings reclassified, which can raise the standards.

Watershed Classification Acronyms Explained
This page has a lot of detail on Watershed Classifications, but scroll to the bottom and you’ll find the Acronym key.

Impaired Waterways List (303d)
nformation on the 303d list from the EPA: how water bodies are classified as impaired and how they are removed from the list. Find the EPA’s list at this site as well.

Water Quality Standards

Sediment Pollution Control Violations and Civil Penalties
This Excel spreadsheet is updated yearly and contains all Notices of Violation in the North Carolina. This spreadsheet can be sorted by county or by name of the violator. Use this chart to see if a development has previously received a Sediment and Erosion violation.

Current Development Projects in the Watershed

Chatham County: List of current development projects underway.

Durham County: GIS Map of development projects.

Orange County: List of current development projects currently in construction.

Guilford County: List of monthly permits that have been issued for 2018.

Mebane: Map of current development projects within city limits.

Green Level: Information detailing new subdivision construction in the township.