A Sweeping Solution to Stormwater Pollution
There’s a surprisingly simple and proven solution to stormwater pollution. When it rains in urbanized places like parking lots and paved streets, instead of soaking into the ground, stormwater runs off these impermeable — essentially water-proof — surfaces picking up and transporting pollutants along the way. Some of the pollutants in stormwater come from what’s washed off impermeable surfaces and some pollutants come from leaves and other organic debris that clog storm drains. When polluted stormwater ends up in our rivers and lakes, people and pets and livelihoods are at risk.
Pollution isn’t the only problem. Storm drains clogged with organic debris cause street flooding, which can make walking, biking, and driving hazardous.
As Minnesota constructs more impermeable buildings, streets, parking lots and other structures, our problems with stormwater pollution and flooding will increase.
Image credit: Maggie Karschnia/MNSG & WRC.
Source: University of Minnesota Duluth
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