Stormwater management is a pressing need in today’s built environments, but it’s important to choose the right one for maximum effect. Here’s how to get started.
We’re just going to come right out and say it: stormwater sucks.
In an unmanaged urban context, at least, it can prove very damaging indeed.
“Increasing development and urbanization of our lands has led to changes in the natural environment that include increases in flooding, degradation of water quality, erosion, and sedimentation of our waterways,” says the University of Virginia’s Facilities Management Department.
Why is this happening? Because our heavily paved-over cities have cut off many of the avenues from sky to water table. Time was, when it rained or snowed, that water found its way to the closest stream or river pretty quickly, or else filtered through soil and other organic substances and joined the aquifer (the saturated area beneath the water table).
Now, that’s no longer possible in urban areas – or at least far more difficult.
Instead, water sheets off city surfaces – brick, stone, cement, asphalt – and eventually into waterways, but only after eroding the environment, spreading disease from sewers, and picking up massive chemicals loads from dirty city surfaces.
Kidding. Terrible times. That’s where a good stormwater management system comes in.