Stormwater runoff can become a huge concern if it is not properly managed. An excess in stormwater runoff has been known to compromise the quality of water in lakes, rivers, and other bodies of water. Stormwater runoff also contributes to pollution, leads to soil erosion and increases the risk of flash flooding. These effects harm ecosystems and put wildlife in jeopardy.
Subsequently, reducing the amount of stormwater runoff is essential. The good news is that there are effective and proven ways to ensure water from storms properly absorbs into the soil, evaporates, reaches larger bodies of water clean or is recycled. Below we highlight five of the best ways to reduce stormwater runoff around your home, business or construction site to prevent harm to your property or the environment. These effective systems include green areas with trees, green roofs, pervious concrete, rain barrels, and stormwater drainage systems.
Green Areas with Trees
Green areas with trees, also called bioretention areas or rain gardens, are small areas of flowers, shrubs and trees designed to prevent stormwater runoff from polluting bodies of water or causing flood or erosion damage.
Trees are incredibly effective at preventing water from rain and melted snow, ice and frost from excessive runoff as they can absorb much of the water. Additionally, tree canopies can hold a large amount of water and allow it to be promptly reabsorbed back into the atmosphere through evapotranspiration.
Green areas with trees are one of the more effective ways to prevent stormwater runoff in urban communities. For homes and businesses, they can protect the home from excessive water buildup in areas around the building, reducing the risk of flooding that can compromise water quality or overwhelm sewer systems. On a larger note, green areas with trees absorb water that would otherwise flow towards bodies of water, picking up harmful contaminants such as dirt, bacteria and pesticides along the way.
Green roofs are roofs that are covered with vegetation. The idea is to capture stormwater before it has a chance to run off the roof, down the pavement and into nearby water sources. In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has implemented green roofs at its Arlington, Denver, and Boston offices.
Although green roofs are still a fairly new concept, the results thus far are incredibly promising in reducing the negative effects of stormwater runoff. They work by capturing water from rain and snow. The water then has a chance to absorb into the vegetation on the green roof and eventually evaporate back into the atmosphere.
The benefits of green roofs to reduce stormwater runoff include improved air and water quality, reduced flooding and less erosion.
Pervious concrete, also called permeable concrete or permeable pavement, is a special type of concrete that is specifically designed to reduce stormwater runoff. Pervious concrete has a high porosity, meaning it has more void spaces that allow for stormwater to flow through the concrete and permeate into the underlying soil.
One of the primary reasons for excessive stormwater runoff in urban communities is concrete. Concrete parking lots, driveways and roads all contribute to stormwater runoff. As the water travels down concrete, it picks up dirt, bacteria, and contaminants before entering into a body of water.
Pervious concrete offers a simple and very effective solution. While not all concrete can be replaced with pervious concrete, many areas such as backyard patios and walkways can effectively utilize pervious concrete to reduce stormwater runoff.
Rain barrels are barrels that collect rainwater. However, the way they work is more complex. The purpose of rain barrels is not to just hold the water but to reuse it. Those who install rain barrels can use the water to water their plants and garden, wash their car, and a variety of other purposes. The water is clean and safe to use.
There are also cisterns that can work to reduce stormwater runoff. A cistern holds non-potable water, and it can be implemented in a way that the water is reused inside the home, such as for flushing toilets. Both rain barrels and cisterns attach to roof downspouts to collect the water before it has a chance to become contaminated by dirty soil, pavement, or other outside elements.
This is a direct and effective way to reduce stormwater runoff as it prevents large amounts of rain from making it to the land. While other systems such as a green area may also need to be implemented, rain barrels are a great place to start for your stormwater management system.
Building Drainage Systems
A drainage system is perhaps the most effective way to prevent stormwater runoff from having harmful effects. The goal with a drainage system is not to necessarily have the water absorb into the soil or evaporate but rather to keep the water clean before it enters into nearby water sources or is reused. Drainage systems can also reduce the likelihood of other stormwater runoff concerns such as flooding or erosion.
Stormwater drainage systems involve a system of channels and pipes that allow water to flow through, remain clean, and enter its ideal destination (i.e. another body of water). They are professionally-constructed systems that require assistance from a reliable company with experience with stormwater management and construction of complex drainage systems.
Contact the Stormwater Management Experts
You can learn more about how to reduce stormwater runoff by contacting our professional team at Dirt Connections. We offer a range of stormwater management services, including assistance in constructing and maintaining residential and commercial drainage systems.
For more information on how we can help you and to receive a free quote, give our team a call today. We are more than happy to address any issues you have had with stormwater runoff and answer related questions. Our team takes pride in helping each client we work with through the stormwater management process, and we believe in quality work completed in a timely manner.
Dirt Connections was started with one goal in mind: providing quality residential and commercial construction services to clients on time and on budget. Reach out for more information on how we can support your next project.
For your convenience our estimates are free and by appointment. Call 703-940-9949 for a free estimate today!