State Water Resources Research Institute Program

Project ID: 2008NY104B
Title: Best management practices for managing stormwater runoff from developing areas in the Hudson River Valley
Project Type: Research
Start Date: 3/01/2008
End Date: 2/28/2009
Congressional District: 22
Focus Categories: Non Point Pollution, Surface Water, Management and Planning
Keywords: Stormwater, nonpoint source pollution, runoff, impermeable surfaces, BMPs
Principal Investigators: Steenhuis, Tammo ; Geohring, Larry D (Cornell University); Richards, Brian
Federal Funds: $ 0
Non-Federal Matching Funds: $ 23,765
Abstract: As documented in the Hudson River Estuary: Report on 10 Years of Progress, great strides have been made to "remove or remediate pollutants and their sources." Consequently, the health of the Hudson River system is improving. However, new urban and suburban developments in the lower parts of the Hudson River basin - including the Walkill River watershed in Orange County - threaten this trend of declining pollution levels because development typically contributes to increased stormwater-related loadings. The management and treatment of stormwater runoff in urbanized and developing areas with substantial impermeable surface coverage presents a major challenge. Increasing quantities of runoff are generated from impermeable surfaces (roofs and pavement), yet the number of locations for adequate runoff storage and treatment are diminished as development proceeds. There are wide varieties of best management practices (BMPs) available to help manage storm water runoff. Structural BMPs include retention basins, rain gardens, filter strips, and devices to remove oil and grease from runoff, while non-structural BMPs involve operational and management techniques that can limit adverse impacts of stormwater. Preventing any potential adverse effects of development on stormwater-related loadings depends on the continued effectiveness of the selected BMP. There is still a significant need for focused research on the actual in-field effectiveness of commercially-implemented practices for load reduction of sediments and nutrients. Economical and ecologically sound BMPs are essential to managing the adverse effects of development on stormwater-related peak flows and pollutant loadings to surface waters. We anticipate that our work will help achieve this combination by providing in-field evaluative data on the performance of commercially-implemented structural and non-structural BMPs. The results will provide an improved understanding of the effectiveness of these technologies for the management and treatment of urban and suburban storm water runoff.

Progress/Completion Report, PDF

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