Better Together: Advancing Stormwater Management through Collaboration
In the 1990’s, the Clean Water Act began requiring significant new stormwater quality management efforts in urbanized areas in the United States. Despite recognition that managing stormwater quality was important to protect streams and lakes, many questions remained on the effectiveness of various stormwater control measures. In the mid-1990’s, a group of stormwater practitioners and academic researchers proposed development of a national stormwater best management practices (BMP) database to answer some of these questions.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency funded the initial project, which over 20 years later is now sponsored by a coalition of partners led by the Water Research Foundation, Federal Highway Administration, and the Environment and Water Resources Institute of the American Society of Civil Engineers. Through collaboration of these governmental and non-governmental organizations, academic researchers, local governments and private-sector engineering firms, the effort has grown into the International Stormwater BMP Database project. Performance information is now available for over 600 stormwater practices, including both traditional and green infrastructure practices, as well as manufactured devices.
The project has recently expanded to address whole lifecycle costs of stormwater control measures, with particular emphasis on developing a better understanding of the maintenance requirements of green infrastructure. This presentation will provide an overview of the collaborative nature of the BMP Database project, highlight various resources now available through the project, and invite increased international collaboration from Australian researchers and practitioners.
Integrating Stormwater Management into Municipal Programs: A Cost Effective Method for Achieving Clean Water Goals
Highly urbanized, the City of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, encompasses approximately 200 kilometers (125 miles) of streets, 45 kilometers (27 miles) of alleys, and over 0.4 hectares (500 acres) of paved parking lots. The City of Lancaster is one of over 7,000 municipalities in the United States with State and Federal permit obligations to control the rate, volume, and quality of stormwater runoff from its Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4). Additionally, the City is one of approximately 1500 local municipalities across six states required to reduce sediment, nitrogen, and phosphorus from runoff that ultimately reaches the Chesapeake Bay in a manner consistent with the Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) issued by EPA for this regional watershed. In order to achieve these goals, the City has developed an integrated approach that relies largely on green infrastructure (GI) and is achieving cost savings by integrating stormwater management projects as part of its core public works practices.
The presentation will provide an overview of stormwater management in the United States from the Federal Clean Water Act to State and Local regulations followed by a review of the City’s GI program and key approaches to saving costs by integrating GI into public works programs. Case studies will be highlighted from the over 55 projects built since the City’s GI Plan was completed in April 2011, to demonstrate cost efficiencies, summarize operations and maintenance practices, and highlight lessons learned.
Stormwater – It’s Time to Grow Up!
Stormwater has always been the “wild child” among the three siblings in the local water family, the others being water and wastewater. While the other two are well educated, married, have houses, and steady jobs, stormwater is that one who left college, hiked through Nepal and now lives in his parents basement playing drums in a band! City after city is finding that it is time for stormwater to mature in a large number of ways. This presentation will highlight the “top ten” ways that stormwater has been growing up in leading programs in the United States with some application to the Australian stormwater milieu.