|Action||Amend Parts I, II, and III of the Virginia Stormwater Management Program Permit Regulations to address water quality and quantity and local stormwater management program criteria.|
|Comment Period||Ends 8/21/2009|
Hundreds of years past our rivers ran deeper, cleaner, and flooded less often. Natural forests retained more rainwater, used it as nature intended and released the excess. Before land was cleared without concern for or an understanding of the consequences of sheets of rainwater rushing to the sea carrying mountains of sediment, polution, excessive nutrients and garbage there was a balance. And that balance, or part of it, can be restored by providing "natural" plains and marshes where certain vegetation can help cleanse the runoff and slow the flow across our watersheds. Sprawling development demanded by low density housing - housing is needed regardless - only exacerbates the problem. Smart development of future housing and commercial areas should use as little land as is needed and leave much land protected. Clustered housing and commercial development with dedicated vegetated areas to which runnoff can be directed for detention and controlled release with monitored quality standards is not only smart it is less expensive. Ponds, cicterns, stormwater re-use sound like a good idea except that they prohibit a more natural flow of water to our rivers and eventually the Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic Ocean. Stopping or retaining stormwater runnoff is not the answer. Rather, it is the management of the quantity and quality of the water that is the challenge. The rivers and the Bay need water flowing into them. But without the excessive nutrients, pollutants, sediment, oils and poisons we cause as we carelessly develop the land.