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Monday, April 20, 2015

Rainwater runoff isn't just about impervious paved pavements

     With any discussion of storm water runoff caused by development we hear much about impervious pavements of driveways and parking lots.  Want to know what else is a cause of storm water runoff with our suburban development?  Our lawns.  Think your lawn absorbs the rain water?  Not as well as you think.  That thick lush lawn that is so nice to walk on has a thick web like root system that prevents much of the water from getting through to the ground under the roots.  That is why grass drys out so quickly when we go a week or two without rain.  Fertilizing the lawn only makes this problem more pronounced.  There is a cost we pay in replacing our ground water when we have extensive lawns.
      While we in the East Coast are not experiencing the profound water shortage that is now being seen out West we should not think that we will not pay a cost down the road.  Our aquifers supply our ground water and they supply our drinking water.  Without responsible management of our storm water we will see some of the impacts that the West is presently experiencing. Storm water management is more than just the health of the Chesapeake Bay, as important as that is, but it maybe be brought home to us in our drinking water supply.

     The depletion of the aquifer has gotten so bad in some of the agricultural areas of California that the ground is sinking at an alarming rate.
      In Florida the sink holes are being caused by the same problem. 

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