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Advocating Water Quality Improvement in Detroit


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This workshop addresses how citizen advocacy is resulting in cleaner water in the Great Lakes by reducing combined sewer overflows and reducing pollution from Detroit’s sewage treatment plant. Participants will help develop stories and effective strategies to encourage support from the city, sewer agency, regulators, and political leaders. This power point was given by Katie Rousseau, Associate Director, American Rivers.

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Advocating Water Quality Improvement in Detroit

  1. 1. Permitting Green Infrastructure
 Katie Rousseau
 Associate Director, Clean Water Supply Program
 2013 Healing Our Waters 
 Great Lakes Restoration Conference S
  2. 2. Background National Research Council (NRC) 2009 report Urban Stormwater Management in the United States S  The stormwater permit program s over-reliance on general permits, most of which contain vague, subjective, and unenforceable permit terms S  The relative lack of permits that require stormwater management practices that will actually reduce runoff volume rather than simply convey or detain it
  3. 3. EPA s Response S  Objective performance standard that control volume and mimic pre- development hydrology S  Explicit requirements for green infrastructure measures S  Establishing limits or ceilings on the amount of impervious area 2010 MS4 Permit Improvement Guide
  4. 4. Permits need specific, objective language
  5. 5. Objective 
 Performance Standards •  1 of rainfall •  Runoff from a 2 year-24 hour storm event •  85th percentile storm
  6. 6. California Phase II Permit E.12.e(ii)(c) Numeric Sizing Criteria for Storm Water Retention and Treatment The Permittees shall require facilities designed to evapotranspire, infiltrate, harvest/ use, and biotreat storm water to meet at least one of the following hydraulic sizing design criteria: (a)  Volumetric Criteria (1)  The maximized capture storm water volume for the tributary area, on the basis of historical rainfall records, determined using the formula and volume capture coefficients in Urban Runoff Quality Management, (that is, approximately the 85th percentile 24-hour storm runoff event); or (2)  The volume of annual runoff required to achieve 80% or more capture using local rainfall data.
  7. 7. California Phase II Permit (b) Flow-based Criteria (1) The flow of runoff produced from a rain event equal to at least 0.2 inches per hour intensity; or (2) The flow of runoff from a rain event equal to at least 2 times the 85th percentile hourly rainfall intensity as determined from local rainfall records.
  8. 8. Boise, Idaho 
 Draft Phase I Permit B.2.a(i) The ordinance/regulatory mechanism must include site design standards for all new and redevelopment that require, in combination or alone, storm water management measures that keep and manage onsite the runoff generated from the first 0.6 inches of rainfall from a 24-hour event preceded by 48 hours of no measurable precipitation. Runoff volume reduction can be achieved by canopy interception, soil amendments, evapotranspiration, rainfall harvesting, engineered infiltration, extended filtration, and/or any combination of such practices that will capture the first 0.6 inches of rainfall.
  9. 9. Thank You Katie Rousseau American Rivers 419-936-3759 Permitting Green Infrastructure: A Guide to Improving Municipal Stormwater Permits and Protecting Water Quality by Jeff Odefey ( *News and Media ‒ Reports & Publications