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We’ve Moved!

If you’ve noticed that it’s been quiet on here for quite a few months, it’s because we’ve moved.  Please visit The Inlet at our new home —


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EFC Manual Provides Needed Stormwater Information

ImageThe University of Maryland’s Environmental Finance Center’s Local Government Stormwater Financing Manual provides an alternative approach for local government staff seeking financing for stormwater management projects.   The  Environmental Finance Center’s approach is providing government officials a “…process model for being effective leaders in their jurisdictions to create policies and programs…and encourage and empower leadership efforts.”

Access here:

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Upcoming Webinar Looks at Green Infrastructure in Stormwater Management

edCharlottesville Stormdrain

Road surfaces play a huge role in stormwater runoff and green infrastructure is one way to meet stormwater management head on that is both affordable and resilient. To that end the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Wastewater Management and the Federal Highway Administration’s Office of Project Development and Environmental Review are teaming up to co-sponsor the webcast “Innovative Transportation Stormwater Management: Green Infrastructure in Road Projects.”

For more information and to register to this link:

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“One-Stop Shop” Wanted for Stormwater Plans

sm149076289It appears that legislation to reverse the requirement for all localities to administer the Virginia Stormwater Management Program (VSMP) will pass in the General Assembly; however, many non-MS4 localities are planning to ‘opt-in’ to having a local VSMP, instead of having DEQ take it over. Why? One word – Control – control over plan review and inspection outcomes and timeframes. These ‘opt-in’ localities have enough development projects to justify the additional staff and resources to manage the VSMP. Additionally these localities see the advantage to providing a ‘one-stop shop’ for their owners and developers.

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Much of Virginia Fighting Not Only Runoff and Erosion, But Also Rising Seas

Delmarva Shoreline ErosionShorelines, marshes, and wetlands of the Chesapeake Bay are in jeopardy – not just from erosion and water quality issues – but also from both rising sea levels and sinking lands.  Scientists have projected that “if current trends hold, Virginia’s waters could go up an additional 1.5 feet by about 2050 and 5 feet or more by 2100.”

Bay marshes and beaches have coped with aerosion and sea-level rise by migrating inland. Faced with a more rapid rate of sea level rise, these marshes and beaches can’t keep pace and risk becoming mud flats or open water.

“At a foot per century, obviously, they were able to keep up,” said Carl Hershner, a Virginia Institute of Marine Science wetlands expert, “But at 2 feet per century, it’s looking like they are not.”

Learn more about the struggle that Dameron Marsh and other coastal areas are fighting to preserve historic shorelines.

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Arlington Becomes First Municipality in Virginia to Receive MS4 Permit With Quantitative Pollution Reduction Requirements To Clean Up Chesapeake Bay

Arlington County LogoAfter much discussion and negotiations with the EPA, Arlington’s County’s MS4 permit was reissued on June 26th. This new permit requires pollutant reductions of 5% by mid-2013. This permit will be the basis of other MS4 permits within the Commonwealth.

Read details about Arlington County’s permit approval on the County’s web site at:

It should be noted that for future permit cycles, Arlington will need to decrease its share of the Bay TMDL pollutant reductions by an additional 35 percent (2018-2023 permit cycle) and 60 percent (2023-2028 permit cycle).  This will require the County to increase its investment and implementation efforts to keep up with these pollution reduction requirements. Arlington County has been taking numerous steps to stay in front of Chesapeak Bay TMDL reduction.

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Depaving to Mitigate Stormwater Runoff

Depaving PortlandIn the engineering and municipal communities, we spend a lot of effort to treat proposed impervious surfaces, and now with the Chesapeake Bay TMDL, we will spend even more effort trying to find ways to treat existing impervious areas. Let’s not lose sight of the easiest way to improve stormwater quality; reduce pavement. In the new projects we design we need to cast a critical eye on pavement to make sure that it is needed and serves a purpose. This applies to road and sidewalk widths, parking stall sizes and circulation, and those small areas that are easier to pave than to do anything else with. We need to get this message out: that every square foot of impervious has an impact that needs to be mitigated.

This article from teh Christian Science Monitor tells how one non-profit group in Orgeon is making an impact by removing unnecessary pavement from urban areas and creating new grenn spaces that enhance communities and improve stormwater management.

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