watershed Tag

Loudoun County Prepares for Watershed Implementation Plan

I know that I've cited this previously, and might even start sounding like a broken record, but it cannot be stated enough how important stakeholder input and feedback is to the successful  implementation of any plan – especially true in the new world of managing stormwater, TMDLs, and Watershed Implementation Plans – early involvement of the community is essential. Many communities across the Commonwealth will be holding these meetings over the next year. Loudoun County’s first community open houses will be this Thursday. Additional meetings help over the next week. Thursday, May 9, 6-7:30 p.m., Ashburn Library, 43316 Hay Road Tuesday, May 14, 6-7:30 p.m., Cascades Library, 21030 Whitfield Place Thursday, May 16, 6-7:30 p.m. Purcellville Town Hall, 221 South Nursery Ave To learn more about how you can keep informed and have your voice heard, read about the community meetings on Leesburg Today http://www.leesburgtoday.com/news/community-input-sought-on-county-water-plan/article_e5db1a8a-b320-11e2-94c0-001a4bcf887a.html For more details about Loudoun County's Watershed Improvement Plan, visit the County's...

Continue Reading

Report Details Strategies for Stormwater Improvements in James River Watershed

[caption id="attachment_1086" align="alignleft" width="300"] Stormwater Retrofit ()Henrico County, Virginia)[/caption] Now that the MS4 General Permit has been approved by the Board of Conservation & Recreation, the future is rapidly becoming now. Now is the time to determine compliance costs to budget the necessary funds. The report from the James River Association and the Center for Watershed Protection provides much useful cost information, hopefully the start of a continuing sharing of information. The report ranks treatment methods by cost effectiveness, with urban stream restoration ranked as the most cost effective. Though cost effective, stream restoration projects cannot be small projects. Upstream and downstream conditions affect hydraulically stablity, so it is difficult to restore short stream sections. There should still be room for smaller projects, such as parking lot retrofits. The James River Association has championed such projects through their Extereme Stream Makeover programs. Below is a photograph of one such retrofit in Henrico County, a bioretention area in a parking lot...

Continue Reading

In Charlottesville, DEQ Briefs Localities on Quality of Area Streams

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="400" caption="Tara Sieber of the DEQ stands in front of a map depicting impaired streams"][/caption] The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality hired experts from Virginia Tech's Biological Systems Engineering Department to help assess the levels of pollutants in Lodge Creek, Meadow Creek, Moores Creek and Schenks Branch (all considered impaired channels by DEQ since they are not healthy environments for aquatic life) as well as throughout the watershed. How much sediment flows through Moore's Creek annually? Follow the link to Charlottesville Tommorrow's coverage to find out. http://cvilletomorrow.typepad.com/charlottesville_tomorrow_/2012/03/local-water-quality.html...

Continue Reading

Putting the LID on Stormwater Runoff

The following post is provided by guest blogger Thomas Powers, P.E., LEED AP, CFM, CPESC, A Project Manager with Wight & Company in Chicago Illinois and former colleague of The Inlet's Carolyn Howard. [caption id="attachment_688" align="alignleft" width="234" caption="Thomas Powers, PE, LEED AP, CFM, CPESC"][/caption] How many gallons of rain do you think falls each year on just one acre of land in Norfolk, Va.? Ten thousand? One hundred thousand? Would you believe more than one million? Unfortunately, most of that water isn’t absorbed by the land and instead becomes stormwater runoff, carrying debris, chemicals, sediment or other pollutants. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ranks urban runoff and storm-sewer discharges as the fourth most prevalent source of impairment of our lakes, streams and rivers. The current best practices in stormwater management is called low impact development (LID), which refers to a comprehensive land planning and engineering design approach that emphasizes conservation and the use of...

Continue Reading

VT Stormwater Challenges Are Not Unlike VA Stormwater Challenges

As a "Bay State", Virginia is somewhat unique in the challenges that we face related to stormwater management. The watershed where we live and preservation of the Chesapeake Bay are a critical component of our daily lives and our future. Virginia is one of six (6) states (in addition to Delaware, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia) whose area comprises the more than 64,000 square miles of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Assessing, planning, funding and implementing appropriate programs for Virginia has been something that legisalators, professionals, activists and the general public have been debating for years. And in the current economy as our General Assembly prepares to convene it 2012 Session, the debate will continue. The interview which follows highlights many of the same challenges that states outside of the Chesapeake Bay have with stormwater management and the Clean Water Act - namely that funding stormwater programs and wastewater infrastructure...

Continue Reading

Stormwater Impairs Much of Central Virginia’s Rivanna River Basin

There was both good news and bad news in a report issued last week by the area non-profit StreamWatch. In the Streamwatch report the percentage of failing streams hasn’t changed much compared with surveys of years past. Nearly 3/4 of the streams examined in the StreamWatch report were found to have water quality levels below those set by the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality. The report was issued to expand upon the correlation between land use and stream health. Experts already understand that streams that aren’t surrounded by adequate stormwater management systems and buffers of undeveloped land are subject to increased levels of stormwater runoff, carrying pollutants from parking lots, rooftops and streets. Getting this news out to the broader public and local policy makers is a goal of the group. The study was funded by the City of Charlottesville, the counties of Albemarle and Fluvanna, the Rivanna Water & Sewer Authority,...

Continue Reading

Discount Retailer Goes Above Minimum Standards and is Recognized for Conservation Efforts

Stormwater regulations and local watershed are becoming more rigorous to preserve and protect the eco-systems that are so vital for a sustainable future.  In Onley, Virginia, Wal-Mart  both during construction and with its day-to-day operations implemented strategies and programs that are helping to protect the “limited and sensitive water supply” in the community.  These extraordinary actions of today will become the norm tomorrow with the implementation of the  Chesapeake Bay TMDL and pending EPA Stormwater Rule scheduled to be approved in 2012. Learn more about the strategies applied to the new Wal-Mart store and the award in this article from DelmarvaNow.com http://www.delmarvanow.com/article/20110223/ESN01/102230409/Onley-Walmart-recognized?odyssey=mod%7Cnewswell%7Ctext%7CEastern%20Shore%20News%7Cs...

Continue Reading

What is a Watershed?

A watershed is an area of land where all of the water that drains off of it or is beneath it goes to the same place. Below is a video that describes this in more detail: [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XMy6x9Axivg&feature=related] video from patriciascott61...

Continue Reading