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Nonpoint Source (NPS) Pollution Management

Many activities associated with various land uses within Connecticut have the potential to contribute pollution to ground and surface water resources. Water pollution that is not concentrated within a drainage system, or discharged from a point, such as a pipe, is called nonpoint source pollution. Potential sources of Nonpoint Source Pollution include:
  • agriculture,
  • waste from domestic animals and wildlife,
  • malfunctioning septic systems,
  • runoff from impervious surfaces and managed turfgrass,
  • soil erosion,
  • atmospheric deposition,
  • marinas and boating activity,
  • and others. 
Pollutant levels, or loadings, from nonpoint sources can be increased by weather conditions which cause stormwater runoff or snowmelt. If pollutant concentrations from these nonpoint sources are high enough, uses of those surface or groundwaters for public water supplies, recreation, or aquatic life may become impaired.  In Connecticut, stormwater pollution from urban areas that is collected in stormdrains, or that discharges from construction, commercial, or industrial sites, is regulated by stormwater general permits, so is technically considered point source pollution.  More information on Stormwater Management and Permitting The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection has worked to develop programs, technologies and legislation with both local and national significance that are protective of water resources, and has led a national pilot program to monitor nonpoint source pollution at residential development sites.

A significant component of Connecticut DEEP’s Nonpoint Source Management Program consists of implementing the EPA Clean Water Section 319 Program.  DEEP issues a Request for Proposals annually for 319 Nonpoint Source Projects.


Section 319 Nonpoint Source Grant Request for Proposals
CT DEEP's Watersheds Section publishes a Request for Proposals (RFP) annually based on funding provided by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Through this competitive RFP process, CT DEEP provides grants for projects focused on addressing Nonpoint Source impacts in surface waters. Proposals may be submitted by any interested public or private organization, see the link above for more information.

 Additional Nonpoint Source Program Initiatives

GRTS: Grant Reporting and Tracking System

State grant recipients are required to report their progress annually in GRTS, including reductions of NPS pollutant loadings and improvements to water quality achieved by pollution control practices.  GRTS enables EPA and States to demonstrate the accomplishments achieved with the use of 319 grant funds.  The data entered into GRTS is used by EPA to respond to inquires received from Congressional committees, the White House, and various constituent groups.

Grant recipients should fill out the spreadsheet XLS form below, save it, and email it to your DEEP Watershed Manager

Required "load reduction" calculations should be accomplished using either the Region 5 Load Estimation Spreadsheet Model, or the more complex STEPL Model (most recent version), which can be found at: by selecting the Models and Documentation Link on the left side menu.

EPA's GRTS Home has more information on GRTS

DEEP's Watershed Management Program is actively involved in administering nonpoint source control grants and programs.  For further information, please contact your Watershed Manager.

Content last updated March 8, 2021