Stormwater runoff is caused by rain or melted snow. It has the potential to contaminate streams, coastal waters or rivers. It runs off roofs, along driveways and parking lots. As it moves, it picks up debris, bacteria, contaminants, motor oil and ends up in sewer systems and the soil.
Stormwater does not go through a decontamination treatment the way wastewater does. It must be dealt with using a stormwater management system. This system redirects the water away from rivers and streams where it can poison fish and cause other environmental hazards. A good system also keeps flooding from happening.
Environmental regulations for managing stormwater have been set by the government. It is up to you to follow the regulations associated with managing stormwater at your development.
There are several ways to implement a stormwater management system. First, decide if your building or project needs detention or retention systems. These are the basic types of management systems available.
Detention systems catch and hold the runoff water. Retention systems catch, hold and redistribute the water. This water can be used to nourish the soil. Special “green” systems capture water and reuse it to nourish the soil and restore natural hydrology cycles.
Detention systems include ponds, basins, dams, and underground chambers. Ponds can be designed and installed as a landscape feature. They offer an attractive focal point, but also serve as a detention system. Basins or dams can also be designed for larger spaces. These dams collect and hold the runoff water.
All of these systems detain the stormwater and extract pollutants. Underground chambers are a good way to save land space above ground while rechanneling captured stormwater into the soil. These systems can be made of concrete, aluminum or fiberglass. There are some underground systems that are made from recycled plastics. These systems can be tiered or stacked to save space, making them more efficient.
Underground systems capture and filter stormwater. Once filtered, the water can be infiltrated into the soil. These retention systems are economical and environmentally safe. They are easy to install. Traditional systems that are comprised of manholes, pipes, and gutters are also useful. They can be used together with today’s environmental options.
Work to create a system that will keep flooding from happening as well. Parking lots and other level surfaces have no way of redirecting stormwater runoff without the help of some type of management system.
Find out more about managing the snowmelt and rainwater in your area. Contact a stormwater management and design firm. With their help, you can develop an efficient system that will meet your project’s needs. You will be able to manage runoff so that when it leaves your property it leaves without flooding the area or causing contamination to nearby streams or oceans.
There are many options for managing stormwater. It is your obligation to adhere to EPA and Federal regulations regarding stormwater. You need to do your part to help prevent the contamination of streams, rivers and other bodies of water.