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Stormwater credit trading could ease Chesapeake Bay pollution, study says

Chesapeake Bay, the third-largest estuary in the world, has a chronic nutrient pollution problem. In 2010, gradual runoff pollution from more than 13.6 million people living in the watershed grew to national concern, prompting the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to set strict total maximum daily load (TMDL) regulations limiting nutrient emissions. Meeting those regulatory […]

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Town of Rocky Ripple, Butler University, Indianapolis move forward on White River flood barrier

Occupying less than 81 ha (200 ac) between the White River and a canal on the northwestern edge of Indianapolis, flood protection is a serious matter for the small town of Rocky Ripple (Ind.). Lacking any infrastructure of its own to contain overflow from the river, the town’s less-than-700 residents routinely pay thousands of dollars […]

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MIT experiment reveals pathogen-spreading mechanism of rainfall

Each time a drop of rain hits the ground, small pockets of air at the surface are forced up, emitting a mist of smaller droplets in many directions as air breaks through the raindrop. Exhibiting behavior like an aerosol spray, the phenomenon could explain why freshly fallen rain leaves behind a familiar ‘earthy’ scent. After […]

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UC Davis, GE, and Winesecrets turn stormwater into wine

In 2015, California vineyards produced more than 2.4 billion L (638 million gal) of wine, according to the Wine Institute (San Francisco). And now, a California partnership is leading the charge to convert stormwater into wine. The Water Footprint Network (The Hague, Netherlands) estimates that each gallon of wine requires a staggering 3300 L (872 […]

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A retrospective on stormwater in 2016

By Chris French The first few months of every year seem to encourage stepping back to reflect upon the opportunities and changes that the last year brought.

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Billions spent worldwide to improve “natural” green infrastructure

The term green infrastructure generally refers to manmade structures that mimic the absorptive water control properties of nature. But more and more engineers, academics, and regulators are recognizing that the term also includes the very forests, meadows, and wetlands that inspire bioswales, porous hardscapes, and rain gardens. Last September, Governor Jerry Brown of California introduced […]

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Study quantifies the impact of coastal runoff in dollars and cents

A recent Duke University (Durham, N.C.) study makes the first, long-sought evidence linking Gulf of Mexico hypoxia to economic effects. The study, published January in The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, shows hypoxic dead zones in the gulf drive up the price of large shrimp relative to smaller sizes. This effect causes economic […]

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Most U.S. coastlines will sink faster than the global average, NOAA report cautions

While sea levels across the world have long been expected to rise steadily as temperatures increase and ice caps melt, an alarming report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) warns that almost all U.S. coastlines risk more dramatic changes in sea level than the global average. The Jan. 19 report frames potential changes […]

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$1.5 million green infrastructure investment transforms Chicago schoolyard

Renovations to a Chicago elementary school campus totaling $1.5 million will allow the space to retain more than 492,103 L (130,000 gal) of stormwater. The schoolyard’s transformation will promote physical activity, accommodate STEM-focused experiential learning, reduce runoff pollution, and demonstrate the benefits of green infrastructure construction as well as reduce flood risks. Watch a 3-minute […]

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Houston mayor approves $10 million for 22 proactive stormwater rehab projects

On Jan. 11, 2017, Houston mayor Sylvester Turner sent in SWAT to solve long-standing drainage problems across the city. But instead of carrying out high-stakes military operations, this SWAT — the cleverly named Storm Water Action Team — will commence work on approximately 100 deferred projects focused on maintaining and upgrading Houston’s aging flood management […]

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