Stormwater

Stormwater Management

Stormwater is the discharge of water due to runoff from precipitation. Stormwater runoff occurs when precipitation from rain or snowmelt flows over impervious surfaces. Impervious surfaces are areas that impede the infiltration of water into the soil. Concrete, asphalt, rooftops and even severely compacted areas of soil are considered impervious. Stormwater can pick up debris, chemicals, dirt and other pollutants. These substances are then carried directly to a waterway or into a storm drain/inlet, which is connected to a series of underground pipes that lead to waterways (streams or rivers).

Stormwater systems are not designed to capture debris or treat the water like a sanitary sewer system that leads to a wastewater treatment plant.  Because of this, stormwater with unfiltered pollutants can destroy aquatic habitat, lessen aesthetic value and have further environmental impact by contaminating water supplies and recreational waterways.

The New Albany Public Service Department works closely with environmental agencies to implement policies and strategies to properly deal with illicit discharge detection and elimination, concrete washout, post-construction, smart growth, low impact development, green roofs, municipal operations, and many other stormwater issues.

 

Stormwater Management Program
Illicit Discharge Detection & Elimination Plan

NPDES Phase II Program

The NPDES Phase II program was developed in response to the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s continuing effort to preserve, protect and improve the nation’s water sources from polluted storm water runoff. It covers all small municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4’s) located in urbanized areas as delineated by the Census Bureau, and is comprised of six minimum control measures which are as follows:

  • Public Education and Outreach
  • Public Participation Involvement
  • Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination
  • Construction Site Runoff Control
  • Post-Construction Runoff Control
  • Pollution Prevention
  • Good Housekeeping

Storm Water Committee

The purpose of this committee is to discuss current and proposed New Albany stormwater, sedimentation & erosion control policies. The committee will allow local residents, businesses, developers, contractors, environmental groups, governmental agencies, schools, etc., to discuss their roles within the community regarding storm water and sedimentation & erosion control, their past experiences, current and future trends within the field, and the most current BMP’s (Best Management Practices) and BAT’s (Best Available Technologies). For meeting times call 614-855-0076.

Water Pollution & Its Effect On Stormwater

According to a study from the National Environmental Education & Training Foundation (NEETF), 78 percent of the American public does not understand that runoff from agricultural land, roads, and lawns, is now the most common source of water pollution. Because stormwater runoff is generated from dispersed land surfaces—pavements, yards, driveways, and roofs, residents and businesses play a key role in controlling stormwater pollution. Among the daily activities that pose a pollution risk are:

  • improper disposal of pet waste;
  • applying lawn-chemicals;
  • washing cars;
  • changing motor-oil on impervious driveways; and
  • improper disposal of paint and household chemicals.

Ways You Can Help To Improve The Quality Of Stormwater In Your Community

  1. Most homes in New Albany do not have an individual septic system. However, if you do, make sure that it is functioning properly.
  2. If you fertilize your lawn, read the labels and do your research to ensure proper application and timing. Sweep up any fertilizer from sidewalks, driveways, streets and other hard surfaces so that it doesn’t wash into storm drains.
  3. If you use a lawn maintenance company, ask them about integrated pest management (IPM) and organic alternatives which reduce the use of pesticides and fertilizers on your lawn which can be harmful to people and the environment.
  4. Keep lawn and yard waste (raked leaves, yard clippings, etc.) out of the street and backyard streams. Remember, storm drains discharge directly into our streams.
  5. Pick up pet waste and dispose of it properly.
  6. Wash your car in an area where the wash and rinse water drains to a grassy area and not the street, or wash it at a commercial car wash.
  7. Consider installing a rain barrel or rain garden on your property.
  8. Consider planting more trees on your property (before doing so, consult with an arborist to ensure the right tree is planted in the right place).
  9. Consider installing a permeable patio or driveway.
  10. Maintain your vehicle properly. Car leaks eventually flow into our stormwater systems.

How Trees Improve Stormwater

The presence of trees in a community can significantly decrease the amount of stormwater runoff and pollutants that reach local waters.

  • Trees reduce stormwater runoff by capturing and storing rainfall in their canopy and releasing water into the atmosphere.
  • Tree roots and leaf litter create soil conditions that promote the infiltration of rainwater into the soil.
  • Trees help slow down and temporarily store runoff and reduce pollutants by taking up nutrients and other pollutants from soils and water through their roots.
  • Trees transform pollutants into less harmful substances.

Would you like to see the benefit your current trees are already providing? Go to http://www.treebenefits.com/calculator/.

Additional US E.P.A. Stormwater to Street Tree Info

Permeable and Impermeable Surfaces

Permeable surfaces are a valuable stormwater management tool and help reduce the amount of contaminants and volume of stormwater from entering our waterways. By allowing rainfall to infiltrate, groundwater and aquifer recharge is increased, peak water flow through drainage channels is reduced, and flooding is minimized. In fact, the EPA named permeable pavements as a Best Management Practice for stormwater pollution prevention because they allow fluids to percolate into the soil. Consider permeable surface options when building or making home improvements. For more info, go to: https://www.epa.gov/greeningepa.

Impermeable surfaces such as rooftops, concrete patios, sidewalks, roads and parking areas increase the volume of stormwater which enter our storm sewer systems and can collect contaminants such as fertilizers, pesticides, oil, and anti-freeze which enter storm drains. This stormwater discharges unfiltered into our streams and rivers. These pollutants are harmful for wildlife and the environment, as well as our drinking water sources.

Rain Gardens

Rain gardens are shallow gardens designed to absorb rainwater runoff from rooftops, driveways, sidewalks, roads, and other hard surfaces, including turfgrass lawns. They allow water to soak into the ground, reducing runoff. Tough plants that thrive during brief periods of inundation as well as drought do well in rain gardens, and they can be installed in a variety of landscape and commercial landscapes.

  • Rainwater is directed into the garden via  rain chains, rain barrel overflow, downspouts, driveway drains, curb cuts, dry streambeds, and sheet flow
  • When water soaks in, less stormwater  erodes our streams and rivers
  • Deep-rooted plants break up hard soils and create channels for water to move through
  • Plant uptake, physical filtration, and biological processes reduce contaminants like oil, metals, and nutrients

What Are Their Benefits?

  • Reduce localized flooding
  • Reduce stormwater pollution
  • Beautify your landscape
  • Create wildlife habitat for birds, butterflies, dragon flies, and other essential pollenators

New Albany partners with Franklin Soil and Water Conservation District to provide the annual GreenSpot program. Residents are invited to attend an educational presentation and offered a cost share for rain barrels and rain gardens. Please refer to www.franklinswcd.org for details of participating in this storm water protection program.

Integrated Pest Management

Integrated pest management (IPM) is not a single pest control method but, rather, a series of pest management evaluations, decisions, and controls. In practicing IPM, lawn and landscape managers follow a four-tiered approach. The four steps include:

Action Thresholds: Before taking any pest control action, IPM first sets an action threshold, a point at which pest populations or environmental conditions indicate that pest control action must be taken. Sighting a single pest does not always mean control is needed. The level at which pests will become an economic threat is critical to guide future pest control decisions.

Monitoring and Identifying Pests: Not all insects, weeds, and other living organisms require control. Many organisms are innocuous, and some are even beneficial. IPM programs work to monitor pests and identify them accurately so that appropriate control decisions can be made in conjunction with action thresholds. This monitoring and identification removes the possibility that pesticides will be used when they are not necessarily needed and prevents the wrong kind of pesticide from being used.

Prevention: As a first line of pest control, IPM programs work to manage the lawn & landscape to prevent pests from becoming a threat. This may mean using cultural methods such as selecting pest-resistant plant varieties, planting pest-free nursery stock, selecting the appropriate plant for a given site taking into consideration soil, sunlight and climatic preferences, proper mulching, organic soil improvements, and aeration. These control methods can be very effective and cost-efficient while presenting no risk to people or the environment.

Control: Once monitoring, identification, and action thresholds indicate that pest control is required, and preventive methods are no longer effective or available, IPM programs then evaluate the proper control method both for effectiveness and risk. Effective, less risky pest controls are chosen first such as biological & mechanical controls and low volume and low toxicity organic pesticide options. If further monitoring, identification, and action thresholds indicate that less risky controls are not working, then additional pest control methods would be employed, such as targeted spraying of pesticides. Broadcast spraying of non-specific pesticides is a last resort.

Army Corp of Engineers & Environmental Protection Agency

The U.S. Army Corp of Engineers (ACOE) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) are directed by the U.S. Congress under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (33 USC 1344) to regulate and protect the waters of the United States, including wetlands. Individuals and/or entities intending to take actions that would have an impact on streams and/or wetlands should check with the ACOE and the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency  (EPA) to determine whether undertaking those activities would require a permit. The Ohio EPA normally represents the United States EPA in Ohio.

Report Pollution

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Contact

Public Service
7800 Bevelhymer Road
New Albany, OH 43054

Phone: 614-855-0076
Fax: 614-855-8585
publicservice@newalbanyohio.org

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