Archive | October, 2015

EPA Finalizes Clean Water Act Electronic Reporting Rule

On Sept. 24, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized a rule requiring electronic Clean Water Act reporting for municipalities, industries, and other facilities. This includes changes in reporting for municipal separate storm sewer systems. The rule requires regulated entities as well as state and federal regulators to use existing, available information technology to electronically […]

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EPA Launches New Tool to Support Community Interest in Green Infrastructure

The Green Infrastructure Wizard, or GIWiz, is a new web-based tool from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that is helping communities consider the benefits and uses of green infrastructure. The tool responds to growing community interest in using green infrastructure as a means of addressing water quality concerns and a range of other local […]

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Obama Administration Memo Directs Incorporation of Ecosystem Services in Federal Decision-Making

On Oct. 7, the Obama Administration released a memorandum directing federal agencies to factor the value of natural infrastructure and ecosystem services into federal planning and decision-making. Ecosystem services are critical contributions provided by nature that support and protect U.S. communities and the economy. Additionally, these services protect the health and safety of vulnerable populations […]

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EPA Should Better Track CSO Mitigation Outcomes, Report Finds

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of the Inspector General, the agency should track the water quality outcomes of its major municipal combined sewer overflow (CSO) settlements. By better tracking this information, EPA could show how the money communities are spending to address CSO volume and frequency improves local waterways. In a […]

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California Microbead Ban Closes Biodegradable Loophole

On Oct. 8, California became the ninth state to impose restrictions on microbeads. The ban, to become effective Jan. 1, 2020, targets the sale and distribution of synthetic beads used as exfoliates or colorants. California joins Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Maryland, New Jersey, and Wisconsin in the ban on microbeads. However, six state bans […]

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County Announces First Stormwater Project Completed Under Public-Private Partnership

On Oct. 8, Prince George’s County announced the completion of the county’s first stormwater retrofit project under the Clean Water Partnership (CWP). The project at Forestville New Redeemer Baptist Church includes installation of pervious pavers, three rain gardens, an infiltration trench, and a bioswale. The project will filter runoff from approximately 1 ha (2.35 ac) and […]

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Levee Protects Des Plaines River Communities from Flooding

In September, the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (MWRD) announced the completion of Levee 37, which will help prevent flooding in Des Plaines River communities. The levee will protect more than 600 existing homes and dozens of businesses in Mount Prospect and Prospect Heights from future flooding with an estimated annual savings of […]

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Detroit Future City Releases Guide to Revamping Vacant Lots

On Oct. 5, Detroit Future City (DFC) announced the release of a field guide for transforming vacant lots into assets. The guide offers step-by-step instructions and resources to transform vacant land into a variety of landscapes. This actionable tool is designed to improve neighborhoods by enhancing their physical appearance, contributing to more resilient natural infrastructure, […]

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Study Examines Performance of Trees in Bioswales

In a study published in the Journal of Environmental Quality, researchers discovered that certain tree species were best at removing stormwater from bioswales and cycling runoff back to the atmosphere. The trees studied were planted in an upgraded parking lot at the Morton Arboretum, just outside of Chicago, in the 1990s. Partially funded by a […]

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Stormwater Park Demonstrates Green Infrastructure

  . On Sept. 19, the Mississippi Watershed Management Organization (MWMO; Minneapolis, Minn.) celebrated the completion of a unique stormwater park and learning center. It is a public park that showcases green infrastructure. “We have built a beautiful green space for people to enjoy, but more importantly, it’s a place where people can see what […]

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