Watercourse Protection

There are many kilometers of creeks, streams and rivers stretching across Coquitlam. Protecting these watercourses is important as they offer valuable services such as providing habitat for many aquatic plants and animals. The City coordinates a variety of watercourse enhancement initiatives, implements monitoring programs and supports legislation to protect our watercourses.

Help Protect Fish and Aquatic Life

Did you know that storm drains – and anything poured into them – empty directly into local creeks and streams? 

Pool and cleaning chemicals, pesticides, paint, solvents, oil and other toxins require careful disposal. 

Using storm drains to dispose of these and other toxins is not only harmful to fish and other wildlife – killing thousands of fish in local waterways in recent years – but could lead to penalties under the City’s Stream and Drainage System Protection Bylaw and from provincial and federal authorities.

Only Rain Goes Down the Drain!

How to Properly Dispose of Chemicals

Residents and property owners are responsible for properly disposing of hazardous materials. Use Coquitlam’s Waste Wizard or visit the Recycling Council of BC to search for safe disposal locations.

Storm Drain Marking Program

Sign Up to Help Mark Storm Drains!

In partnership with Fisheries and Oceans Canada, the City of Coquitlam offers local residents and community groups the opportunity to protect our streams by marking storm drains with yellow fish.

Interested in marking the storm drains in your neighbourhood? 

Contact the Water Conservation Coordinator by emailing Water Conservation or calling 604-927-3500 for more information. 

Educational brochures to hand out to the neighbourhood and all storm drain marking supplies will be provided.

The yellow fish remind us that the storm drains on our roadways empty directly into local streams and anything that goes into the drains could affect fish and other wildlife. We need to work together to keep toxic substances from entering the storm drains and flowing into our streams.

Ways to Help at Home

  • Wash cars on the lawn or at a car wash to prevent soapy water from entering the storm drain;
  • Do not use pesticides on your lawn or gardens; 
  • Fix oil and transmission leaks and recycle all used oil and antifreeze (check Waste Wizard for recycling and disposal options);
  • Sweep walkways and driveways – hosing them down washes litter, oil and pollutants into storm drains;
  • Never drain hot tub or swimming pool water or chemicals into storm drains – search the Recycling Council of BC for disposal options;
  • During home renovation and construction projects, keep dirt, paint and wet concrete away from storm drains and streams; and
  • Keep pets away from streams – animal waste is polluting, and pets can erode streambanks, cause siltation and disturb fish and wildlife.

Report a Spill or Pollution Right Away

If you witness a contaminated creek or stream, chemicals entering the storm drainage system, or materials spilled onto public roadways, please report it as soon as possible. Rapid reporting ensures that the appropriate response team can be sent to investigate, take action, and protect human health and the environment.

City of Coquitlam Engineering & Public Works:

  • 604-927-3500 (monitored 24/7)
  • Email (monitored 24/7) 

To report environmental emergencies, such as the spill of an unknown, hazardous, or highly-toxic substance that gives you immediate concern for your safety and the safety of others, call Coquitlam Fire & Rescue at 604-927-6400 or dial 9-1-1 and ask for Coquitlam Fire Dispatch and say that you are reporting a spill.

Integrated Watershed Management

For all urban watersheds, Coquitlam is developing Integrated Watershed Management Plans (IWMP) to preserve watershed health, while also meeting community needs and facilitating growth and development. IWMP’s use a Net Environmental Benefit approach that strives to improve fish and fish habitat.