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News Releases from Region 06

EPA helps Santa Fe improve stormwater infrastructure

Contact Information: 
Contact: Joe Hubbard or Jennah Durant at 214-665-2200 or r6press@epa.gov

DALLAS – (Oct. 27, 2016) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today announced a package of tools to help Santa Fe plan long-term strategies for managing stormwater pollution. The tools will promote the use of flexible solutions that spur economic growth, stimulate infrastructure investments and help compliance with environmental requirements

“Adequate stormwater infrastructure plays a vital role in the health of streams, rivers, and lakes,” said EPA regional administrator Ron Curry. “We continue to equip communities with the tools they need to help advance water management and integration of new green infrastructure technologies.”

EPA’s approach has three parts: a step-by-step guide to help communities develop long-term stormwater plans, a web-based toolkit for the planning process and technical assistance for five communities to develop plans as national models. This approach was built on input from states, communities, industry, academia and nonprofits.

“We are delighted to be working with the EPA and New Mexico Environmental Department on this forward-thinking project. This community owes so much of our history and culture to our river, and as mayor I am always looking for ways to work together with those who would restore the river's physical beauty and biodiversity as it creates jobs and honors our heritage,” said, Santa Fe Mayor Javier M. Gonzales.

Five communities will receive $150,000 and use the draft guide to develop long-term stormwater management plans. These communities will also be the first beta testers for EPA’s web-based toolkit, which will be refined and released more broadly next year.

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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