Minimize Storm Water Run-off (Job Site and Landscaping series)

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These days, storm water flow rates are significantly higher for a given storm than they would be naturally, because more and more people are using impermeable paving methods. Storm water picks up polluted materials like pesticides from around your home, flows quickly over impervious surfaces, and contaminates water supplies. In addition, improper drainage can cause moisture damage to your home and increase the risk or flooding. You can prevent storm water damage to the environment and your home as you remodel by considering the following recommendations.

Incorporate Permeable Paving - RC

• Permeable paving allows water to seep into the soil, reducing the volume of polluted storm water that flows into local water supplies. It also replenishes soil moisture and local aquifers, reduces irrigation requirements, and lowers flooding risks.

• Recommendation: For walkways and paths, use gap-spaced unit payers (such as stones with sand in between them), decomposed granite, or gravel. For driveways, consider gravel or grass-stabilization systems.

Protect Existing Plants; Plant New Vegetation - RC

• Vegetation will increase the amount of water that can seep into the soil, thus significantly decreasing or even eliminating problems such as flooding and runoff caused by excess storm water.

• Recommendation: Existing vegetation should be protected and , where necessary, new vegetation planted to retain moisture in the soil. In general, woodlands with dense underbrush provide higher moisture permeation than turf.

Use Rooftop Water Catchment Systems - $, RC

• Rooftop water catchment systems can significantly reduce both runoff and the use of potable water for landscape irrigation. Rainwater can be channeled through gutters and downspouts to an aboveground cistern or underground gravel dry well.

• Recommendation: Install a rooftop water catchment system wherever there is guttered roof runoff and room for a cistern. Simple measures may be required to comply with local building codes or to keep mosquitoes and other insects away.

In this rooftop water catchment system, water flows from the existing rooftop gutters into a storage bin for easy access.
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Updated: Saturday, August 15, 2009 13:20