Stormwater Runoff Can Cause Erosion

In addition to often being toxic or harmful, stormwater runoff can cause erosion. This impacts the humans, animals and environments surrounding watersheds. Solutions are needed to reduce the process of erosion while improving stormwater runoff water quality before it reaches creeks, rivers, bays, and other waterways.
People Impacted
$ 76B
Potential Funding
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the impact
Negative Effects
  • Land erosion

  • Death and sickness in underwater animals, particularly fish

  • Water quality violations of bacteria, dissolved oxygen, mercury, ammonia, temperature, and pH standards

Ideas Description

Green infrastructure can potentially help both the potential for erosion and the quality of stormwater runoff. For example, a project experiencing success is in the urban Northgate district of Seattle, WA. It is the 11.6-square-mile Thornton Creek watershed where highway stormwater runoff was causing erosion and water quality problems in Thornton Creek, an important salmon habitat. It diverts stormwater from an enclosed drainage system under the site of a redeveloped parking lot to a series of small ponds landscaped with enhanced soils and native plants, reducing flow rates and allowing pollutants to settle out before the water reaches the creek. Similar green architecture could be implemented in other areas experiencing similar challenges.

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