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EPA funds storm water runoff control & pollution prevention projects
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it is providing more than $3.5 million in funding to the District Department of Energy and the Environment (DOEE) for projects to control storm water runoff and prevent pollution to district waterways.
Four projects are being funded with $3.2 million through EPA’s Office of Water. They include the Oregon Avenue Watershed Green Streets project, a Stormwater Outfall Restoration Project, the Department of Public Works Transfer Station Stormwater Improvement Project, and the 19th Street NW Green Infrastructure Project. In addition, the agency announced $361,518 in additional funding to DOEE for a storm water tracking database project.
“Restoring our nation’s water infrastructure is one of President Trump’s and EPA’s top priorities because all Americans deserve clean water,” said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt.
“Stormwater management and erosion and sediment control inspections are highly effective tools to prevent pollution in our urban areas from reaching our rivers and streams,” said Tommy Wells, DOEE director. “These funds will also expand the District’s programs to investigate illicit discharges and help facilities strengthen their pollution prevention practices. Through our constructive partnership with EPA, we are making significant progress towards the restoration of waters in the District of the Columbia and the larger Chesapeake Bay watershed.”
The Oregon Avenue Watershed Green Streets project will install low impact development (LID) techniques in the streets that drain into Oregon Avenue and to outfalls into Pinehurst Creek and Rock Creek. Rock Creek and several of its tributaries have been severely impacted by storm water runoff from the watershed above Oregon Avenue. This project will protect these waterways from further damage and also protect recently completed stream restorations. This project will install bioretention, permeable pavement, and other appropriate reduction techniques to retain storm water runoff on the streets and alleys that drain into Pinehurst Creek and Rock Creek.
The Stormwater Outfall Restoration Project will address the need for the repair of the District’s Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) outfalls, which are contributing to water quality degradation from destruction of riparian and in-stream habitat located within the District's MS4 permit area. In this project, DOEE will partner with other district agencies, DC Water, and the National Park Service to repair at least 13 of the damaged outfalls in targeted waterways.
The 19th Street project will manage 2.6 acres of road and sidewalk drainage in the public right-of-way using bioretention, permeable paving and street tree box enhancement, to retain about 64,000 gal of water during a 1.2-in. rain event.
The funds also will be used for a Department of Public Works Transfer Station Stormwater Improvement Project which will address two solid waste transfer stations that require implementation of best management practices (BMPs) to address issues with polluted storm water runoff in order to come into compliance with requirements of the District's National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) General Permit for Stormwater Discharges. The stations to be retrofitted are Benning Road and Fort Totten.
In addition, through an additional $361,518 EPA Chesapeake Bay Regulatory and Accountability Program funding, DOEE will develop two-year milestones, implement improved inspection, report and track BMPs, develop rainwater harvesting design construction and water quality manuals for the district development community, eliminate illicit discharges to the district’s MS4, and develop guidance for new DC well regulation.
This funding is the second installment of the grant that has funded the development of the District’s storm water database, which includes detailed information on storm water BMPs, such as location and maintenance. This database also supports the tracking of storm water retention credits as part of the District’s trading and offsetting program.