Sustainable Water Infrastructure

by adm!n 16. March 2011 02:09


Drinking water treatment plants, sewer lines, drinking water distribution lines, and storage facilities ensure protection of public health and the environment. As a nation, we have built this extensive network of infrastructure to provide the public with access to water and sanitation. Much of the drinking water and wastewater infrastructure in the U.S. was built 30 years following World War II, mirroring the increase in population.

We cannot ignore the arriving wave of infrastructure rehabilitation and replacement we will face over the next several decades. To do so would put the achievements of the last 30-40 years and our nation’s waters and public health at risk.

Basic Information

Infrastructure Gap

EPA is committing to promote sustainable practices that will help to reduce the potential gap between funding needs and spending at the local and national level. The Sustainable Infrastructure Initiative guides our efforts in changing how the nation views, values, manages, and invests in its water infrastructure. EPA is working with the water industry to identify best practices that have helped many of the nation’s utilities address a variety of management challenges and extend the use of these practices to a greater number of utilities. We believe that collaboration with a coalition of leaders, with EPA playing a prominent role, can build a roadmap for the future promotion of sustainable infrastructure through a Four Pillars approach:

Better Management of Water and Wastewater Utilities,

Rates that Reflect the Full Cost Pricing of Services,

Efficient Water Use, and

Watershed Approaches to Protection.



New Soil Erosion and Sediment Control Rules Coming

by adm!n 16. March 2011 02:07


On January 5, 2011, Governor Christie signed into law a bill (Assembly Bill A-2501) which amends the Soil Erosion and Sediment Control Act, N.J.S.A. 4:24-39 et. seq. (the "Act"). The Act, designed to control and limit soil erosion, authorizes the State Soil Conservation Committee to establish standards for the control of soil erosion and sedimentation. One example of the soil management requirements resulting from the Act is the use of silt fences at construction sites.

According to Governor Christie’s press release announcing his signing into law Assembly Bill A-2501, the new amendment "updates statewide soil erosion and sediment control standards so that soils can properly absorb and control stormwater runoff. This will help address problems at many construction sites, where soils get compacted to such a degree that water simply runs off into our waterways, carrying pollutants and nutrients as they go."

The following specific changes to the Act are made in the bill:

A developer’s plan for controlling soil erosion and sedimentation will now be required to include "soil restoration measures," in accordance with the standards to be established by the Soil Conservation Committee. Under the old rules, soil erosion and sediment control plans only required measures to control soil erosion during the project. The new law requires a plan to restore the soil conditions at the site once the project is completed.

The new law defines "soil restoration measures" to include "those measures taken to ensure, to the maximum extent possible, cost-effective restoration of the optimal physical, chemical, and biological functions for specific soil types and the intended land use." What is "cost-effective" and what those optimal functions are will likely be the source of some debate as the new requirements are implemented.

The definition of "disturbance" in the Act is amended to include the "compaction of soil which degrades soil so as to make it less conducive to vegetative stabilization." The terms "vegetative stabilization" is not defined, leading to potential issues in the implementation of the new requirements.

The Soil Conservation Committee is tasked with modifying the existing soil erosion and sediment control standards to include standards for "soil restoration measures."

Developers will need to keep up-to-date on these rule changes as they proceed with and plan their development projects to ensure compliance with the Act.

TAGS: Assembly Bill A-2501, Corzine, DEP, Land Development & Sustainable Building, New Jersey department of Environmental Protection, Senate Bill S-1410, Soil Conservation Committee, Soil Erosion And Sediment Control Act, runoff, silt fences, soil compaction, soil erosion and sediment control standards, soil restoration measures, vegetative stabilization



Stormwater legislation approved

by adm!n 16. March 2011 02:03

Wednesday, February 23, 2011 10:17 AM


ThisWeek Community Newspapers

New Albany Village Council on Feb. 15 updated its stormwater control ordinances to meet state standards and adopted a stormwater mitigation plan to improve runoff controls and encourage development.

Council voted unanimously — with Colleen Briscoe and Sloan Spaulding absent — to amend the village code for stormwater management. The amendment essentially updated the code to match current practices.

Bill Dorman, the village's engineering manager, had explained at prior meetings that the village retains a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination Systems (NPDES) permit through the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency Division of Surface Water. The permit allows the discharge of surface water into local streams but restricts the amount of pollutants that can remain in the water runoff.

Dorman said the village's NPDES permit previously applied only to 5-acre sites or more that were disturbed by digging, grading or some other usage that could cause runoff into a local stream. However, standards have changed and the village has changed along with them, requiring projects disturbing involving as little as 1 acre to report the pollutant controls put in place to prevent runoff.

Even though that means some residential projects could be involved, Dorman said, the permit applies only to the area disturbed. As an example, he said if a homeowner with a 1-acre lot wanted to put in a driveway and the digging and grading only disturbed 0.8 acres, the permit would not apply.

Council also voted unanimously to adopt a stormwater mitigation strategy that will provide the village and developers with guidelines on how to handle storm water in the village center.

Kathryn Meyer, the village's deputy community development director, said the strategy continues the efforts already begun to preserve the local watershed and "identifies several improvements, projects and best-management practices that address stormwater management."

By formally adopting the plan, council is showing it wants these practices to be followed, Meyer said.

The plan includes options for stormwater control, some using traditional methods and some nontraditional, more environmentally friendly methods in the village center. The options include:

• Installing an urban pond at the northeast corner of Market Street and Dublin-Granville Road to handle stormwater runoff from the development in Market Square.

• Implementing more environmentally friendly runoff from smaller streets such as Second and Third streets using permeable brick pavers and a runoff system underneath the street. Third Street was rebuilt in 2010 using the "green" system.

• Using a basin and other controls to handle storm water from Miller Avenue and surrounding developments.

• Enhancing the flood plain along Rose Run east of state Route 605, possibly with a naturalized preserve that could remain wetlands.

Councilman Glyde Marsh objected to leaving wetlands and basins in the village center, saying the "green" areas do not provide tax revenue and while they may be attractive, they can be home to mosquitoes.

Meyer responded that she has been assured by local environmentalists that wetlands will also be home to animals that eat mosquitoes to curb an excessive population. To answer Marsh's question about less tax revenue, the stormwater mitigation plan could encourage more development.

"By addressing storm water in one location, we may not have to take out more land (for stormwater management), which allows more for development," Meyer said.

Dorman agreed and said by addressing stormwater issues now, the village would maximize areas for future development by saving developers the cost of implementing some stormwater controls.

Mayor Nancy Ferguson said some of the recommended strategies that filter before it returns to local streams would be beneficial. The ecology of local streams will be better maintained if runoff water is able to cool to a more normal temperature before flowing back into a stream.

"The ecology and biology can be addressed through these solutions," she said.

Tags: welcomes PaveDrain

by adm!n 3. March 2011 19:22

Today PaveDrain became the newest partner. We are getting closer to our goal of supplying our visitors with the latest sustainable design concepts and green technologies in the market & connect you with the companies who manufacture, design, distribute, and install these systems In May of 2007 Mr. Buch began consulting in the erosion control and stormwater industry, forming the company ECS Solutions, LLC. While reading the trade magazine Land Development Today, the thought of a cabled permeable paving system from 2004 re-surfaced. Later that year, following a business trip, the idea of incorporating an arch at the bottom of an articulating concrete block for the purpose of "storing" water formalized. Shortly thereafter an initial design for a permeable articulating concrete block/mat system was completed, plastic molds for a wet cast block were ordered and a business plan forged to fully understand the nuances around this MASSIVE yet barely tapped market. READ MORE AT PaveDrain's Page.