Keeping Watersheds Healthy in Mountlake Terrace

To learn more about the health of your favorite creek or lake in Mountlake Terrace, watch the video recording of the Mountlake Terrace watershed discussion presentation from May 19, 2022. 

MLT watershed webinar flyer Opens in new window 

Contact Us
Laura Reed

Stormwater Program Manager
Email, Phone: 425-744-6226

What's the Problem with 11 tons of Dog Poop?

What is stormwater?

Stormwater is rain and snow melt that runs off of impervious surfaces such as rooftops, paved streets, highways, and parking lots. As it runs off, it picks up pollution like oil, fertilizers, pesticides, soil, trash, and pet waste. In Mountlake Terrace, stormwater is not treated when it goes into a storm drain. It flows downstream directly into streams and lakes. Stormwater runoff is the leading threat to Washington’s urban waters, streambeds, banks, and habitats.  To learn more about stormwater watch the video below!  

To learn how you can improve stormwater in Mountlake Terrace visit our webpage "How You Can Get Involved".

Close Dumpsters to Protect Creeks

  • Open dumpsters let rain wash pollutants through drain holes and into storm drains.  
  • Keep dumpsters closed to prevent "dumpster soup" from reaching local creeks and lakes.

leaky dumpster with hole

(Images courtesy of Pierce County.)

Looking for safe ways to dispose of household toxics?

Examples of spills: paint, oil, pesticide, antifreeze, and sewage spills; but a spill can be anything harmful to human health or the environment.

Click on the image below for more information on where to take chemicals and other materials inappropriate for regular garbage.

Example hazardous waste

Below are links to resources to help you dispose of toxics safely:
Snohomish County Hazardous Waste
Acids, Aerosol Spray Cans, Antifreeze*, Batteries*, Bleach, Brake Fluid, Chemistry Sets, Cooking Oil, Drain Cleaners, Dyes, Fertilizers, Fire Extinguishers*, Flammable Liquids, Floor Wax, Fluorescent Tubes/Bulbs*, Fungicides, Furniture Polish, Road Flares, Gasoline / Diesel, Glues, Herbicides, Hydraulic Fluid, Insecticides, Mildew Removers, Moth Balls, Motor Oil*, Neon Lights, Kerosene & Kerosene-filled Heaters, Lamp Ballasts (unstamped/pre-1975), Lead, Mercury, Oil Filters*, Oven Cleaners, Paint, Varnish or Stains (Oil-based) , Paint, Latex (for a fee), Paint Thinner, Pesticides, Photographic Chemicals, Pool Chemicals, Propane Tanks* (BBQ size or smaller), Rug and Upholstery Cleaners, Shoe or Silver Polish, Smoke Detectors, Solvents, Switches containing Mercury, Tar / Roofing Tar, Thermometers or Thermostats containing Mercury, Transmission Fluid, Ultraviolet Light Tubes, Wood Preservatives, X-Ray Film
    *These items are also accepted at Recycling and Transfer Stations and Drop Box sites. Some quantity limits or other restrictions may apply.

Ecycle Washington (electronics)
Take It Back Network (computers, monitors, TVs, fluorescent light bulbs and tubes)
Call2Recyle (batteries)
Light Recycle (fluorescent light bulbs and tubes)
Take Back Your Meds (unwanted medicines)

Adopt a Drain Flier For Social Media

To learn more click here

Where does the stormwater go?

In Mountlake Terrace all stormwater is either soaked into the ground, managed on a property, or flows through one of our four watersheds. 

A watershed is an area of land that collects water and drains or “sheds” to a common waterbody. Smaller watersheds flow into larger watersheds or larger waterbodies such as the Puget Sound. In Mountlake Terrace, there are several small watersheds that outlet into Lake Ballinger and Lake Washington.  

To find out more about each of the watersheds in Mountlake Terrace visit our Creeks and Lakes in Mountlake Terrace webpage.

MLT Watershed Map with Lake Ballinger

Want to report a spill?

Spills that enter the stormwater system negatively impact fish, wildlife, pets, and people.  Water is the only thing that should enter our stormwater system.  If you notice other substances such as oils, pesticides, paint, antifreeze, and sewage near a catch basin please call the number below to alert the City of Mountlake Terrace.  Learn more about spills on our Stormwater Division Services page. 

Spill Control Hotline - To report a pollutant spill to the stormwater system call the Public Works Department at 425-670-8264 between 7 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. weekdays. Call 911 after hours, on weekends or during holidays.

Motor Oil Spill

Mountlake Terrace was one of the first cities in the Puget Sound region to incorporate stormwater activities as part of a combined Utility Fund in the mid 1960s. The Stormwater Division works to protect water quality, enhance habitat, control flooding, and comply with state and federal requirements. Activities include managing the stormwater comprehensive facility maintenance plan, public education and outreach, site inspection to ensure proper maintenance of stormwater facilities, identification and control of pollutant discharges to the stormwater system, and spill cleanup response.

Hall Creek