U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 7
11201 Renner Blvd., Lenexa, Kansas 66219
Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and Nine Tribal Nations
Burlington, Iowa, among Five U.S. Cities Chosen as Pilot Sites for EPA’s Long-Term Stormwater Planning Assistance
Contact Information: Chris Whitley, 913-551-7394, firstname.lastname@example.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(Lenexa, Kan., October 27, 2016) – Burlington, Iowa, is one of five cities selected by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to pilot the use of a package of tools and technical assistance designed to help communities plan long-term strategies for managing stormwater pollution.
Burlington—along with Chester, Pa.; Hattiesburg, Miss.; Rochester, N.H.; and Santa Fe, N.M.—will each receive $150,000 in EPA technical assistance to develop long-term stormwater management plans, using a new step-by-step guide and a web-based toolkit for the planning process, the agency announced today.
EPA’s tools promote the use of flexible solutions that spur economic growth, stimulate infrastructure investments, and help compliance with environmental requirements.
The City of Burlington is currently in the process of preparing an integrated plan that would consider many of its environmental responsibilities required by the Clean Water Act, including stormwater management. Both the State of Iowa and the City of Burlington have welcomed the city’s selection as pilot community for the use of EPA’s tools and technical assistance. The project will be led by EPA headquarters, coordinated with the City Manager’s office, and supported by the state’s efforts.
Burlington and the other four pilot communities will serve as the beta testers for EPA’s web-based toolkit, which will be refined and released more broadly next year.
"When communities link the timing and implementation of stormwater projects with broader planning activities, they can reduce costs and support more sustainable local development," says Joel Beauvais, deputy assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Water. “As stormwater increasingly threatens public health and the environment, EPA can help communities integrate stormwater management with broader plans for growing their economies, investing in critical infrastructure and meeting their water quality objectives.”
Each year billions of gallons of runoff laden with trash, nutrients, metals, and other pollutants flow into waterways. Stormwater runoff is one of the fastest growing sources of pollution across the country and it can overwhelm wastewater systems and overflow sewers. Many cities have utilized green infrastructure as part of a comprehensive, long-term approach to managing stormwater. Communities are finding the benefits from such approaches go well beyond helping to meet regulatory requirements and actually turn hazards into opportunities. Comprehensive, long-term plans can guide smart investments by tying together multiple community objectives like street improvements, outdoor open spaces, greenways or recreation areas, as well as community revitalization.
For more information: https://www.epa.gov/npdes/stormwater-planning
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