It’s been 45 years since the passage of the Clean Water Act. We’ve observed great improvements to the Nation’s water quality, due largely to pollutant discharge permit programs whose requirements are implemented by local jurisdictions and other permittees. Despite the significant progress, there is more work to do, as stormwater runoff continues to be a leading cause of degraded waterways. Regulatory mandates—funded and unfunded—to reduce pollutant loadings prompt communities to embrace a watershed approach and implement traditional and innovative best management practices (BMPs). Yet, future federal funding for these programs is uncertain, as is the extent of federal regulation of pollution sources under the Clean Water Act. Staff capacity and financial support continue to be identified as major issues for effective program implementation by those involved in managing water quality and watershed programs.
In response, local jurisdictions are finding ways to transform how watersheds and stormwater runoff are managed–from program administration to source control measures. Permittees are pursuing alternative strategies to develop cost-effective stormwater and watershed management programs. The Center for Watershed Protection’s 2018 National Watershed and Stormwater Conference will bring these issues to the forefront with presentations on financing strategies for watershed and water quality improvements, and programs and practices that innovate to more comprehensively address multiple pollutant sources in mixed land use watersheds.
7:30 AM – 8:30AM Local Hub Registration
8:30 AM – 9:00 AM Local Hub Introduction to the 2018 National Conference – Icebreaker and Conference Logistics
9:00 AM – 10:30 AM Local Presentations (Local Hubs)
10:30 AM – 10:45 AM Break & Networking
10:45 AM – 12:00 PM National Webcast – It Ain’t Easy Getting Green: Incentivizing Watershed Programs (Online)
The morning National webcast will present an overview of water quality funding strategies throughout the United States with a look back at historical approaches to appreciate our need to look ahead in the adoption of alternative approaches. Two case studies will present how an East Coast city is implementing urban stormwater credit trading and how a West Coast utility is achieving funding resilience for watershed programs.
Paying for Watershed and Stormwater Management Programs (Stacey Berahzer ,NC Environmental Finance Center)
Success in cleaning our Nation’s waters requires effective financing strategies. Finding a reliable and predictable funding stream for water quality protection has been a challenge for many communities. This presentation will provide an overview of lessons learned from past approaches with an eye towards new upcoming approaches needed to restore and maintain healthy watersheds.
Case Study of the Washington DC Stormwater Retention Volume Credit Program (Greg Hoffmann, Center for Watershed Protection)
Municipalities can monetize water quality improvements through water quality trading programs. Washington DC, like many cities, is faced with water quality problems caused by stormwater volume. In 2013 the City codified a stormwater retention volume credit system that allows trading of excess stormwater retention volume. Recently the Center for Watershed Protection began a program to assist with the sale and transactions associated with volume trades. This presentation will highlight incentives and steps to implementing this innovative trading program.
Case Study of Clean Water Services in the Tualatin River Watershed (Antonia Machado, Hillsboro, OR Clean Water Services)
This session will present a case study of how a western Oregon utility inspired service area communities to make investments in time, land and money to restore their water quality and environment. Over the past 15 years, CWS partners have restored 110 river miles in the Tualatin River watershed and enrolled over 70 farms in their program. The presentation will provide transferable watershed management strategies useful for watersheds dealing with non-point source nutrients, development pressure, and financial resilience.
12:00 PM – 1:30 PM Lunch & Networking (Local Hubs)
1:30 PM – 2:45 PM National Webcast 2 – Managing Stormwater at the Agriculture/Urban Continuum (Online)
The afternoon webcast will shift gears and provide presentations on strategies to address the uncertainty of regulated and non-regulated pollutant loads in urban and agricultural watersheds.The regulatory and modeling context for nutrient management typically associates loadings from discrete land uses, such as urban, agriculture and wastewater sectors. Consequently, the management of these land use-based loading sources is addressed by separate organizations and distinct BMPs or conservation practices. This approach presents challenges for implementation in communities that include a mix of urban, rural and agricultural land where there are MS4 or non-regulated jurisdictions. The webcast presentations will provide an overview of pollutant sources and pathways present in these mixed-use watersheds, and the issues and challenges faced with their management. Two case studies will provide examples of strategies and methods to implement pollutant reducing measures in this urban to rural continuum and the lessons learned for broader application.
Pollutant Sources and Pathways Present In Mixed-Use Watersheds And The Issues And Challenges Faced With Their Management (Jonathan M. Duncan, Ph.D., M.P.A, Pennsylvania State University)
Talbot County Bioreactor Ditch Retrofits (Carol Wong, P.E., Center for Watershed Protection)
A case study presentation on the innovative approach to address nonpoint source pollution loadings in a rural watershed in the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Talbot County, MD received grant funding from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources and contracted with the Center for Watershed Protection to retrofit agricultural drainage ditches to better manage stormwater flows and effectively treat both stormwater and groundwater nutrient and sediment pollution. Talbot County also received grant funding from the Chesapeake Bay Trust and contracted CWP to monitoring bioreactors to estimate nutrient and sediment reductions, as well as groundwater flux through a bioreactor. The presentation will address methods to identify locations for this practice, design and construction specifications, estimated load reductions, and lessons learned.
Ohio Actions for Nutrient Reduction in Lake Erie (Sandra Kosek-Sills, Senior Technical Staff, Ohio Lake Erie Commission)
Annex 4 of the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement (2012) requires binational phosphorus reduction strategies and domestic action plans (DAPs) to meet phosphorus concentration and loading targets in Lake Erie by 2025. In advance of the 2018 due date for the DAPs, in June 2015, the governors of Ohio and Michigan and the Premier of Ontario signed a collaborative agreement to reach a 40% reduction in the phosphorus load to the Western Lake Erie Basin (WLEB) by 2025. The Ohio Lake Erie Commission (OLEC) is coordinating with other states and federal agencies, and other partners, to develop the Ohio and US DAPs and to implement actions to achieve the Lake Erie targets. As submitted to USEPA in November 2017, the draft Ohio DAP lists actions the state intends to take to meet phosphorus targets for 2020 and 2025. OLEC’s work to coordinate agricultural, urban stormwater, and NPDES programs, as well as basin-wide monitoring and research is a significant effort. In this session, we will hear about how the state’s Lake Erie programs integrate and will finance urban and agricultural programs to achieve the Lake Erie phosphorus reduction goals.
2:45 PM – 3:00 PM Break & Networking
3:00 PM – 4:45 PM Local Presentations (Local Hubs)