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Minneapolis St. Paul News, Weather, Traffic, Sports | Minneapolis, Minnesota | kare11.com

WeatherMinds: Keeping storm drains clean and clear

Leaves love to collect near storm drains. Not only does that lead to localized flooding, it's also harmful to Minnesota's lakes and waterways.

This morning you may have spotted a scene similar to the clogged storm drains in my neighborhood.

Leaves and grass clippings can easily back up storm drains, especially with a heavy rain when water carries them right to the drains. Not only do these clogs cause localized flooding, but they are harmful for water quality.

The leaves that head through the storm drains go directly to our lakes, ponds, rivers and streams. There's no filter for them. As they break down, the leaves add a huge amount of nutrients to the water. Those nutrients contribute to algae blooms and fish kills. 

So cleaning the storm drains now helps to ensure clean water for swimming and boating next summer. 

Don't just rake your yard ... make sure your stretch of the street is clear, too!