Clean Vessel Act Grant Program

Project At a Glance

Save the Waters You Love

Boaters of all kinds enjoy the waters of the San Francisco Bay-Delta Estuary, a unique spot for year-round recreational and commercial boating. These boaters can, however, impact the quality of the Estuary waters they enjoy. In particular, untreated sewage discharged from boats can cause localized effects on water quality and public health, especially in semi-enclosed marinas and harbors where minimal water flushing occurs. Sewage from houseboats and other live-aboard vessels is a particular concern in parts of the Estuary, specifically Richardson Bay, Alviso Slough, Redwood Creek and the Delta.

Under a Clean Vessel Act grant from the California State Parks Division of Boating and Waterways, the Estuary Partnership manages a dynamic Education/Outreach and Monitoring program aimed at encouraging boaters to use pumpout and dump stations rather than discharging directly into the Estuary.

Meet our team below and see What's New!

Natasha Dunn

Environmental Planner

Liz Juvera

Environmental Planner

Adrien Baudrimont

Environmental Planner

This project advances the following Estuary Blueprint goals and actions

Water Quality and Quantity
Champion the Estuary

Action 26

What's New

Pumpout Nav
Make managing boat sewage more convenient and trackable, right from your mobile device!

Find the closest operational sewage pumpout station for your boat, learn how to use the pumpout to empty your holding tank, report non-functional units, and more when you download Pumpout Nav for free in your device’s app store!

California Pumpout Report
What is the likelihood that a boater will have a positive experience at a given pumpout?

SFEP and The Bay Foundation have been monitoring pumpouts throughout California for almost a decade and have used the most recent data to write this report.

Universal Adapter Kits Available!
A new pilot project in place to champion clean boating and reduce pumpout frustrations

This exciting project aims to overcome challenges faced when using pumpout stations by making it a simpler, cleaner, and hands-free experience. More information on how to get your kit coming soon!

Boat Shows & Yacht Club Presentations

Come meet us in person twice a year at the Pacific Sail & Power Boat and the Sacramento Boat Shows! We’ll have good information to share. Or invite us to give a presentation on Clean Boating Practices at your Club by emailing at

Delta Capacity Building

One tool to help build stronger pumpout networks in the Delta involves convening marinas to discuss shared challenges and solutions. Find out more


Stands for Best Management Practices! If you are a marina or boat facility manager, this handy booklet informs you on today’s material and practices leading to an even more environmental facility! 

Read the Report
Our ongoing mission

Outreach & Education

For more than two decades, the San Francisco Estuary Partnership has been working in the 11 counties of the San Francisco Bay and Sacramento Delta to promote clean boating and environmental stewardship to boaters and marinas, in partnership with the California State Parks Division of Boating and Waterways (DBW), The Bay Foundation, the Coast Guard Auxiliary, and a vast array of other partners.

Our multifaceted educational campaign is focused on in-person boater education, regional capacity building, and pumpout network enhancement. The combination of boater and marina education and capacity building serves to address the complex nature of sewage discharge by providing boaters with the information they need to make correct decisions and provide marinas with the tools they need to work with boaters to proactively prevent sewage discharge.

Keeping a functional pumpout network


For the past 10 years we have been monitoring approximately 80 pumpouts in the Bay and Delta for their use and condition. In addition to collecting information, SFEP also notifies marinas of broken or malfunctioning pumpouts, ensures that all pumpouts monitored have the proper signage. Since 2008, this fruitful collaboration maintained a highly functioning pumpout network, with a rough 90% of operational pumpout stations.

When necessary, at locations that had badly damaged nozzles, universal nozzles with backflow flaps are given to marina operators. This helps ensure that the boaters using the pumpout network are not deterred by collapsing nozzle tips that commonly impede flow.

NEW! SFEP partnered with The Bay Foundation’s CVA Program to develop Pumpout Nav, a free Android and iOS App that allows not only CVA Surveyors, but marina managers and boaters as well, to monitor pumpouts, helping us maintaining an operational network.



Pumpout Nav!

Download the free app by searching for Pumpout Nav in your device’s app store. Locate the closest operational pumpout to your location, learn how to operate a pumpout, or report any issue you might have.

2017 CA Pumpout Report

SFEP has worked with the California State Parks Division of Boating and Waterways and The Bay Foundation in southern California to write the 2017 CA Pumpout Report

Grant Opportunities

Marina managers: is your pumpout too expensive to maintain, or do you need a new one? Grant money is available from the Division of Boating and Waterways through the CVA Operation & Maintenance or Installation Grants. How to apply?

Pumpout Nav

Get Involved

Do you want your marina listed on the Pumpout Nav app? Want to streamline or initiate a monitoring program for your region with the help of Pumpout Nav? Fill out the Onboarding Form to learn more about the app and how to get involved. We will contact you shortly!

FREE iOS and Android App

For Smart Phones & Tablets

Search “Pumpout Nav” in the app store of your Apple or Android device. Download it to your phone or tablet today.

Throughout California

Well, almost:

Pumpout Nav covers eleven counties of the San Francisco Bay Area and Sacramento Delta, as well as the five Southern California counties from Santa Barbara to San Diego. Look for more states coming on to the app soon.

Data Driven

For a Functional Pumpout Network

Our staff uses Pumpout Nav when we go out to survey the pumpout stations. Through the app we collect condition information and take measurements to assess the quality of the device. Help us collect some of this information by taking a closer look at the pumpout.

Find Pumpouts!

When the Time Comes

Pumpout Nav helps you find the nearest operational pumpout. Make sure you have cell service when turning the app on!

Speak up!

Let us know if something is not right

If a pumpout is not accessible or not in working condition, users can take a picture and report directly through the app. It will let other boaters know by changing its status on the app automatically, and will send us and the marina manager a note. We will coordinate to fix it.

First Time User?

All you need to know

The Information section contains a video on how to use a pumpout, as well as a step-by-step written guide. More in-depth details about the impact of raw sewage on the environment, as well as how a Marine Sanitation Device works, can be found in this section.

How do we help build a stronger network?

The California Delta

Sewage pumpout systems in the often rural California Delta differ from those in the more urban areas of Southern California or the San Francisco Bay Area, presenting unique challenges to boaters and marinas.

The effectiveness of these systems can have broad impacts on this stunning ecosystem, potentially degrading water quality and increasing nutrients that help invasive species take hold.

Ensuring a strong, consistent network of functioning marinas that boaters can easily access is key to building good sewage disposal habits.To build the capacity of marinas to address issues of aging infrastructure and lack of resources, SFEP is engaging marina owners and staff in a series of regional meetings to discuss shared challenges and opportunities. Check back in the late fall to hear what we’ve discovered.

Pumpout Guides and Maps for Boaters