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Last Updated: Tuesday, February 6, 2018 10:35 AM

Caltrans Statewide Stormwater Program

October 2016 Annual Report and 2017 District Work Plans
  • Learn about our efforts to protect water quality.
  • Access the reports and documents that guide us

Department of Finance Review of the Stormwater Program

November 2003:This is a comprehensive review of the Department's Stormwater Program and the regulatory system in which it operates. The Report raises a number of larger issues about the cost to comply with stormwater regulations and the impacts of those costs on the transportation system. Included in the Report are the Department's responses to Finance's recommendations.

storm drain on the highway
river bridge
ventilation system
underneath a river bridge

The overall goal of the Stormwater Program is to integrate appropriate stormwater control activities into ongoing activities, thus making control of stormwater pollution a part of Caltrans normal business practices. Components of the Caltrans Stormwater Program include:

  • Construction General Permit
    • The Construction General Permit (CGP) was adopted by the State Water Resources Control Board on September 2, 2009. The Order will take effect on July 1, 2010. Click here for more information.
  • Scoping Questionnaire for Water Quality Issues
  • 2012 Water Quality Assessment Report
  • Stormwater Management Plan (SWMP) - July 2016 Revision
    • Caltrans developed the SWMP to describe the procedures and practices used to reduce the discharge of pollutants to storm drainage systems and receiving waters. The SWMP describes Caltrans program and addresses stormwater pollution control related to planning, design, construction, maintenance, and operation of transportation facilities.
  • Annual Report and District Workplans
    • The October 2016 Annual Report reports on the activities that Caltrans has undertaken in the previous fiscal year to implement the SWMP. The District Workplans describe the activities that Caltrans Districts will undertake in the next fiscal year to implement the SWMP.
  • Monitoring and BMP Development.
    • The purpose is to identify pollutants of concern in stormwater runoff from Caltrans facilities and to describe how Caltrans identifies, evaluates and approves BMPs.
    • Stormwater Monitoring Event Tracking
  • Public Education
    • Public education is a major component of Caltrans stormwater management activities.
  • Guidance for Design, Construction and Maintenance Activities.
    • Guidance documents have been developed to implement stormwater BMPs in the design, construction and maintenance of highway facilities.

      The "BMP Retrofit Pilot Program - Final Report ". The appendices of this report are available here.

      The mission of the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) is to improve mobility across California. The Department plans, designs, constructs and maintains transportation facilities including: highways, maintenance facilities, park and ride lots, rest areas, bridges, tunnels, toll booths,and inspection stations.

      Federal environmental regulations based on the Clean Water Act (CWA) have evolved to require the control of pollutants from Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4s), construction sites and industrial activities. MS4s include state operated roadways. Discharges from such sources were brought under the NPDES permit process by the 1987 CWA amendments and the subsequent 1990 promulgation of storm water regulations by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

      Caltrans was issued the nation’s first statewide stormwater NPDES permit in 1999 by the State Water Resources Control Board.

What's on the INDEX:

  • Monitoring and Research Applied Studies
    • To help refine the framework of the Storm Water Program, Caltrans has implemented a number of monitoring and research applied studies and projects. Descriptions of these efforts can be found on this page.
  • Stormwater Bulletins
    • Support for the Caltrans Stormwater Program is provided through several periodic publications. A library of these publications is maintained on this page.
  • Links
    • List of other websites focusing on stormwater issues.
  • Water Quality Planning Tool
    • Available only on the Internet, this tool is a database of water quality standards, and possible pollutants from Caltrans facilities.
  • Basin Sizer
    • Allows users to find information useful for sizing stormwater basins in California.
  • Recent Reports
    • Technical and program documents, most in Acrobat PDF format, are available for viewing and downloading.
  • NPDES Stormwater Coordinators
    • Contact information for District and Headquarter offices.
Other Caltrans Stormwater Sites:
  • Division of Design
  • Division of Construction
    • The Division of Construction Stormwater Quality Handbooks, Construction Site Best Management Practices (BMPs) Manual, and Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) and Water Pollution Control Program (WPCP) Preparation Manual are available on this page.


Division of Environmental Analysis, Stormwater Unit
California Department of Transportation
P.O. Box 942874, MS-27
Sacramento, CA 94274-0001
Email: Division of Environmental Analysis, Stormwater Unit