Stormwater Management

Stormwater Management

Effects of Stormwater:

Stormwater is the precipitation that collects upon the landscape in the form of rain, snow, ice, and sleet. As the rain moves or snow melts and flows across the surface, it picks up different pollutants such as sediment, oil, grease, lawn fertilizers, pesticides, agricultural runoff, and many other toxic substances that collect on the ground. The water drains into the storm sewer system and flows through a series of pipes eventually reaching our streams, rivers, wetlands, and lakes. This water is untreated and, because of the toxins it has collected, adversely affects water quality in the receiving waters. Bacteria, nutrient loading, fecal coliform, and other harmful pathogens and chemicals can cause health risks to the ecosystem and to the members of the community.

The increase in impervious cover resulting from population growth has created greater stormflows, therefore more water enters our streams, rivers, wetlands, and lakes. Groundwater replenishment is decreasing, flash flooding occurs more frequently, and the health of our streams is declining.

The need for a balance between human progression and environmental integrity has never been greater. Ways of addressing stormwater-related problems include: the use of wetlands to remove pollutants from stormwater before it is allowed to drain into nearby waterways, the use of retention to reduce the velocity of water     before it enters waterways, and the reduction of the amount of water entering the stormwater system at its source. These are just some of the ways to address a problem that affects each one of us and the health of our resources.

There are several ways that you as an individual can help. Implementing water conservation practices in your own backyard can save you money and create interesting gardens. Rain barrels collect water from your    downspouts and can be used to water your garden, yard, trees, or anything else in your yard. A rain garden is a   relatively small area of plantings near the drain spout of a building or a paved area. Rainwater is routed to the garden and filtered naturally by the plants and soils of the garden.


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