Stormwater quality and water conservation

Hobart has many types of stormwater drainage, including stormwater pipes, stormwater pits, kerb and guttering, rivulets and creeks and the dish drains on sides of roads.

Water runoff from urban areas, including roofs, roads and footpaths makes its way through the stormwater drainage system and often finds its way into the Derwent Estuary. Unfortunately, in this runoff is often litter and debris from human activity. 

To prevent litter and debris from entering the Derwent Estuary, the City of Hobart has many devices in various locations within the stormwater drainage system. The devices stop litter, vegetation and wooden debris, sediment and other gross pollutants at the entry point or at the end of the line of a stormwater system. 

These devices include: 

  • litter socks – located at McRobies Gully outlet into Hobart Rivulet
  • floating litter traps – located on the Hobart Rivulet, Macquarie Point and the New Town Rivulet, New Town Bay
  • small litter traps in stormwater pits – located in stormwater grates around shopping precincts
  • boulder traps – located on Hobart Rivulet at Cascade Gardens
  • debris racks – located on Hobart Rivulet near Gore Street, at Lambert Rivulet prior to it being piped under Queenborough Oval and near the boulder trap on Hobart Rivulet at Cascade Gardens
  • debris and sediment traps – located on New Town Rivulet at New Town Bay
  • sediment weirs – located on Hobart Rivulet near Barrack Street
  • in-line/in-pipe gross pollutant traps – an in-line gross pollutant trap at Market Place. 

In addition to these devices, the City of Hobart undertakes street cleaning using large sweeper trucks, small mobile footpath sweepers, other mechanical sweeping and sweeping by hand.

View more information about our street cleaning

A reduction in litter pollution discharged from our stormwater systems and rivulets ensures a healthier and cleaner estuarine environment for marine life in the Derwent Estuary. The community also benefits as they help make the surrounding areas much tidier and more attractive. 

Stormwater drains are for stormwater only. Washing of liquids or other products into the stormwater can cause serious environmental harm as many of our stormwater pipes connect into the city’s rivulets and then finally into the Derwent Estuary where plants and animals can be harmed. Contaminated stormwater can also impact the water quality of swimming beaches and other recreational waters. Where possible washing anything into the stormwater system should be avoided. 

Remember - all drains lead to the sea

For more information or if you have any queries regarding gross pollutant traps and the City’s stormwater systems and rivulets please telephone 03 6238 2886 or email