• Public Education

  • FOG Clogs! Created by Benjamin Lewin

    FOG Clogs! Created by Trent Abbey, Imani Miller, and Turner Ivey

Public Education
Recognizing that one of the most effective ways to reach the public is through community involvement, Gwinnett County has a variety of information and education programs designed to encourage environmentally responsible behavior at home, school, and work.

Getting the information where it is most effective has been a truly cooperative effort by the Stormwater Management, the Environmental and Heritage Center, the Gwinnett Extension Service, the Department of Environmental Health, Collections and Distributions, Planning and Development, Parks and Recreation, Adopt-A-Stream, Gwinnett Schools and other State and Federal Agencies.

What to Know about "Flushables"

Gwinnett County sewerage system is designed to dispose of very specific things:  water, toilet paper and human waste. 

Many things you may think are “flushable” do not break down like toilet paper.  Using the toilet as a trashcan can result in clogged pipes, tangled pumps and messy sewer backups into creeks, streets, businesses and homes.

What not to flush:

  • Keys & Cell Phones (but we bet you knew that!)
  • Baby wipes and diapers
  • Facial cleansing cloths
  • Bathroom cleaning wipes
  • Rags and towels
  • Cotton swabs
  • Dental floss
  • Syringes
  • Candy and other food wrappers
  • Clothing labels
  • Cleaning sponges
  • Toys
  • Plastic items of any description
  • Aquarium gravel or kitty litter
  • Rubber items such as latex gloves
  • Cigarette butts
  • Sanitary napkins
  • Hair
  • Disposable underwear
  • Disposable toilet brushes


But the product is labeled 'Flushable.’

Some products labeled 'flushable' do not disperse or break apart once they are in our sanitary sewer system. As these non-dispersibles collect in the sewer pipe, they can eventually cause blockages that can lead to sanitary sewer backups or overflows. These backups are harmful to the environment and costly for homeowners and utilities. 

Learn More

Protecting your property:  Backups can happen not only in the county’s system, but your home’s plumbing as well.  Click here for more information.

Toilet paper vs. wipes:  Consumer Reports created a video showing how quickly toilet paper breaks apart.  Click here to watch.

What to Know in June

Pick it up:  It’s your Doodie!

What should you do about your pet’s doo-doo?

Pet waste, mostly from dogs, but also from cats and small animal bedding, is finding its way into our streams. How do we know? The Gwinnett County Department of Water Resources regularly tests surface waters throughout the county for fecal coliform bacteria, which comes from the fecal waste of warm-blooded animals. It gets into our water when rain washes poop particles into a storm drain structure or ditch, or when people dump pet waste outside in a concentrated area. Click here to learn more about the connection between pet waste and water quality.

When more rain falls than can be absorbed into the ground, it begins to flow aboveground as runoff. Runoff carries any pollutants it encounters to the nearest stream. Pet waste contributes bacteria, which could contain disease pathogens, and excess nutrients to the runoff. We have separate systems for stormwater and waste water in Gwinnett County. The stormwater conveyance system is meant to reduce localized flooding and transports runoff directly into streams. The water is not treated before it’s released into the environment. That means that any pollutants the water picked up along the way go into your streams.

How can you keep your streams and neighborhoods clean and safe? Pick up after your dog and don’t dump anything down a storm drain. You can attach a small dispenser to your leash to help you remember your bags. Bag and throw away pet waste from cat litter or small animal bedding in the trash. It’s Your Doodie!