What is Stormwater?
Stormwater runoff originates from precipitation or snowmelt washing over or flooding land areas. In many rain events, this water does not have the opportunity to infiltrate properly into the ground. Instead, it runs off into nearby surface waters, collecting pollutants on its way, or pools on the surface to evaporate or permeate at a slow rate. While storm sewers often collect runoff and some is treated, rain events may directly discharge the stormwater into surface water without treatment.
Risks from Stormwater
As more development occurs, we have more and more impervious surfaces (surfaces water cannot easily penetrate)—such as roads and parking lots. These surfaces prevent infiltration (water naturally soaking into the ground). This causes the water to flow across the land into local surface waters. Increased stormwater runoff , more often and at higher rates will increase localized flooding and damage even in small storm events. More stormwater runoff means less groundwater recharge and less natural pollutant removal.
Stormwater collects contaminants as it washes across roads, farm fields, roofs, and other impervious surfaces. When it drains into surface waters, it transports these pollutants into the water as well. Thus, we can consider stormwater a potential source of contamination to public drinking water supplies. It can pose a major risk to humans and threaten our safety and impacts on the aquatic life and wildlife in and on these waterways. The three main aspects of stormwater impacts are water quality, groundwater recharge, and flooding.
Pennsylvania Stormwater Regulations
Stormwater regulations across Pennsylvania require the management of stormwater to help protect our water sources, aquatic life, and wildlife, by keeping contaminants out of the water. Because stormwater is becoming heavily regulated across the Commonwealth, PRWA has developed a program to assist in managing stormwater and complying with permit requirements.
Continue reading to find more information on PRWA’s Stormwater Program, Sourcewater Protection as it Relates to Stormwater, Pennsylvania’s Stormwater Regulations, and additional resources regarding stormwater.
Call us at 800-653-7792 or click here to contact us online with any questions. Click the "Buy Stormwater Membership" to start receiving the benefits of a the Stormwater Management Program today!