Dec 31

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Greener Ground, Cleaner Water

Trading grey pipes for green spaces is helping cities control storm-water runoff. Tune in for some technicolor:

Rain Garden Monroe county Crime Lab 3

Rain gardens outside the Monroe County Crime Lab provide a green, peaceful haven, breaking up the monotony of a grey cement sea. (via Andy Sansone)

When it rains, it pours…off pavement and into sewers and so-called “grey infrastructure.” This can overwhelm the system, sending pollutants past water treatment centers… straight into creeks and streams.

So to absorb and filter stormwater where it falls, some cities are turning to green infrastructure such as rain gardens.

Sansone: “The rain garden is designed to put a portion of that water back into the ground.”

That’s Andy Sansone of Monroe County Environmental Services in New York. He says the benefits of replacing pavement with plants go beyond water quality.

Sansone: “It gives us the ability to create some green spaces that weren’t otherwise there…”

…providing a solution that’s beautiful and functional.

Hear More:

Green infrastructure is a fairly new practice. Listen to Andy Sansone describe the development of a manual to help other communities “streamline” the installation and maintenance of rain gardens.

Get Schooled:

The Fine Print:

  • This segment was produced with Cornell’s Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future, and supported by agreement with New York Sea Grant, funds provided by the Environmental Protection Fund under the authority of the New York Ocean and Great Lakes Ecosystem Conservation Act. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this broadcast are those of the originators and do not necessarily reflect the views of Stony Brook University or New York Sea Grant.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.currentcast.org/stormwater-management/greener-ground-cleaner-water/