Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4)

Water quality and the St. Joseph River

The St. Joseph River is a major waterway, its course winding for more than 200 miles in northern Indiana and southern Michigan before emptying into Lake Michigan. Polluted runoff from municipalities, agriculture, forestry, and construction causes physical changes to the river’s channel, harms fish and wildlife populations, kills native vegetation, fouls drinking water supplies, and can impair recreational uses.

Protection under the Clean Water Act

 The Clean Water Act, administered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), was implemented to protect our nation’s water supply. As part of this effort to protect and maintain water quality, the EPA established the Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System Program, known as MS4. Both the City of Mishawaka and Bethel College have been designated MS4 entities and must comply with MS4 program requirements.

Mishawaka Department of Planning

For more information about nonpoint source pollution and how you can help prevent it, as well as community activities, contact the Mishawaka Planning Department or the Bethel College Physical Plant Director.