Getting a notice of violation (NOV) is never a fun experience. Having a violation found during a stormwater inspection means having to shift your focus from your business and spend time, energy, and money on becoming compliant with the relevant stormwater ordinance. You’ll also likely be hit with a hefty fine for being found non-compliant. Having the necessary understanding of your stormwater control measures (SCM's) and the common violations that can happen with them is important for you to be able to resolve a situation before it becomes a headache.
It’s been a busy couple of weeks in the Restoration + Recovery office. Hurricane Florence brought on high wind speeds, torrential rainfall, and hurricane runoff that caused flooding in many parts of the Carolinas. This environmental disaster has left much of the coastline still reeling, with citizens displaced and their properties’ fate still up in the air. Although it is important to respond to the needs of those still displaced, it's also important to think about how effective the stormwater facilities we have in place to minimize damage even during extreme rain events were.
How far back into history does the first stormwater management system go? Our civilization has been implementing systems using low-impact development principles for hundreds of years. With some of these original techniques still in use today,1 one can wonder how there’s any room for new technologies in the industry.
Brace yourselves. We are on the cusp of another fire season, and its year-to-year intensity is only increasing. Like many environmental issues, the increase in wildland fires has no quick fix. It depends not just on firefighters and foresters, but whole communities to take part in preventative and reactive actions.
The Technology Assessment Protocol – Ecology (TAPE) Program is the Washington State Department of Ecology’s process for evaluating and approving emerging stormwater treatment Stormwater Control Measures (SCMs). New stormwater treatment SCMs that are not in the current Stormwater Manual or have not been approved by TAPE must first be approved by Ecology's TAPE Program, an effective way to keep up with emerging technologies.
Rural stormwater management plans are growing in popularity. The proper development and maintenance of BMPs is important even in areas away from intense development, as runoff can still negatively affect water quality and surrounding environments. There are physical and regulatory differences to managing stormwater in rural vs. urban areas, and knowing how localities can use their ordinances to mandate runoff requirements outside of MS4s can help ensure your business stays compliant.
Familiarization with properly functioning drainage systems is key to being able to recognize when storm drain infrastructure is failing. Understanding the consequences of clogs and other maintenance problems is the first step in resolving them. Knowing the Anatomy of a Storm Drain, and the support available from R+R, can help keep your customers from stepping out of the car and into a pool of standing water.
A healthy stormwater system should be able to handle the most torrential of downpours with aplomb. These heavy downpours can dramatically swell the affected watershed; how do properties without the broad real estate for detention ponds keep from contributing to floods? Underground vaults.
The town of Bluffton, SC recently announced that it has begun inspections of all stormwater drainage and treatment systems in a program that will impact both neighborhood and commercial developments. The inspection program is in place to ensure that the Town of Bluffton meets the requirements of the federal National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System General Permit and the requirements of the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.