Green Infrastructure & Coastal Resilience
Green infrastructure is a cost-effective, resilient approach to managing wet weather impacts that provides community and environmental benefits. While single-purpose gray stormwater infrastructure—conventional piped drainage and water treatment systems—is designed to move urban stormwater away from the built environment, green infrastructure reduces and treats stormwater at its source while delivering environmental, social, and economic benefits.
Stormwater runoff is a major cause of water pollution. When rain falls on our roofs, streets, and parking lots in cities and their suburbs, the water cannot soak into the ground as it should. Stormwater drains through gutters, storm sewers, and other engineered collection systems and is discharged into nearby water bodies. The stormwater runoff carries trash, bacteria, heavy metals, and other pollutants from the urban landscape. Higher flows resulting from heavy rains also can cause erosion and flooding impacting ecosystems, habitat and weakening resilience to extreme weather events and sea level rise.
Green infrastructure uses vegetation, soils, and other elements and practices to restore some of the natural processes required to manage water and create healthier environments. Green infrastructure is a patchwork of natural areas that provides habitat, flood protection, cleaner air, and cleaner water. At the neighborhood or site scale, stormwater management systems that mimic nature soak up and store water.
Read more about it at the Peconic Estuary Program: HERE