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New USEPA Stormwater Calculator Helps Manage Stormwater Runoff

Storm drainThe U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) recently unveiled its new National Stormwater Calculator. The tool can help property owners, developers, landscapers, and urban planners make informed land-use decisions to protect local waterways from pollution caused by stormwater runoff. Managing stormwater runoff, which can impact drinking water resources and local ecosystems, protects public health and the environment.

The calculator is phase one of the Stormwater Calculator and Climate Assessment Tool package announced in President Obama's Climate Action Plan. The desktop application estimates the annual amount of stormwater runoff from a specific site, based on local soil conditions, slope, land cover, and historical rainfall records. Users can enter any location in the U.S. and select different scenarios to learn how specific green infrastructure changes can prevent pollution. “The Stormwater Calculator demonstrates different types of green infrastructure approaches which can result in protection from flooding, energy savings, improved air quality, increased property values, healthier communities, and cost savings for the American people,” explains Lek Kadeli, the principal deputy assistant administrator for USEPA’s Office of Research and Development.

The National Stormwater Calculator will be updated by the end of the year to include the ability to link to several future climate scenarios. Climate projections indicate that heavy precipitation events are very likely to become more frequent as the climate changes. For more information about the National Stormwater Calculator or to download it onto your computer, click here.


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