Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Huge Win for IPR!

The IPR demo project is underway; which is a huge step in the right direction for San Diego's future water supply. Please check out this link to find out more.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Water supply in Dublin area on knife-edge | Irish Examiner

There's an old joke that goes, " You know it's summer in Ireland when the rain gets warmer."

The joke is funny to anyone who knows Ireland, because it's a wet country, with seemingly endless rain. But, like the rest of the world, demand is outstripping supply. Or in other words, Mother Nature cannot replace it fast enough for society's use. What is the solution? Conservation.

"THE water supply to the country’s largest urban area is on a knife-edge, with senior managers warning that members of the public will have to conserve water to ensure there are no future shortages."

Water supply in Dublin area on knife-edge | Irish Examiner

Thursday, July 22, 2010

San Diego NEEDS to Know Our H2O!

We wrote an Op Ed piece calling for water management reform down here in San Diego today.  Our local paper, the Union-Tribune ran it this morning.

A guest commenter by the name of Alan h, wrote:
"I couldn't agree more with this article.

20% of California's energy consumption is simply to move water around the state (mostly from North to South).

Its time to stop trying to solve today's problems with yesterday's ideas. Simply consuming more and more water is like building more and more freeways. That's not the answer.

Ask any 5th Grader and they can tell you the answer:

1. REDUCE our water consumption

2. REUSE our water multiple times

3. RECYCLE wastewater and stop discharging 185 million gallons a day into our coastline!"

Sounds like this guy has been watching our film, and Knows His H2O!  

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Green Infrastructure for Clean Water Act

The Green Infrastructure for Clean Water Act (S. 3561) was just introduced into the Senate by Tom Udall (N.M.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (R.I.). This bill is nearly identical to the House bill of the same name (H.R. 4202) that was submitted in 2009. The House bill has since picked up 40 cosponsors.

By encouraging advances in America’s understanding and use of green infrastructure techniques, these bills will help to achieve environmental and economic benefits for communities across the country.

Stormwater runoff is a serious threat to the nation’s waterways and public health, costing Americans hundreds of millions of dollars each year in lost tourism revenue, increased drinking water treatment costs and loss of habitat. Fortunately, green infrastructure provides a cost-effective and environmentally sound approach to reducing stormwater and combined sewer overflow pollution. This strategy stops water pollution at its source by using trees, vegetation, and open spaces to capture and infiltrate rain where it falls – letting the environment manage water naturally, inexpensively, and effectively.

Because it decreases hard infrastructure costs while increasing property values and creating jobs, green infrastructure is an economically prudent water management technique. Moreover, it offers wide-ranging environmental and social benefits beyond reductions in polluted runoff: it improves air quality, mitigates the urban heat island effect, and provides better urban aesthetics. Studies have shown that green infrastructure improves health and saves energy used to heat and cool buildings. Green infrastructure techniques also minimize flooding and ensure more resilient water supplies by increasing groundwater recharge.

The Green Infrastructure for Clean Water Act promotes the use of these multi-beneficial methods by making green infrastructure a national priority. The bill establishes “Centers of Excellence” for green infrastructure that will provide critical research and information coordination services. It will establish a green infrastructure program within the Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Water to promote the use of green infrastructure and provide technical assistance to states, local governments, and the private sector. Most importantly, the bill will provide communities with the resources they need to implement green infrastructure projects on the ground, improving the lives of their residents.

Participate in the Surfrider's action alert and send your Congressional leaders a letter urging them to co-sponsor the Green Infrastructure for Clean Water Act. Just click here.

To learn more about Green Infrastructure visit EPA's website, the Surfrider Foundations Coastal A-Z on Low Impact Development, or the previous blog posting on this bill.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010


Got storm water? L.A. now has standardized plans for runoff infiltration

June 30, 2010 | 12:40 pm

InfiltrationplanterDuring the rainy season, the city of L.A. sends 100 million gallons of untreated runoff into the Pacific Ocean.

Tuesday, the city's engineering department signed off on six standard plans that can be used to prevent some of the flow coming from parkways, highways, alleyways and cemented curb areas and divert it into the ground where it can recharge groundwater and prevent pollutants from reaching waterways. The plans give specific guidelines for installing swales, vegetation, permeable pavement and other systems to prevent storm water from flowing over nonporous surfaces into storm drains.

"What we're trying to do here is take storm water or urban runoff and infiltrate it in streets or alleys and make it consistent so that people aren't frustrated with trying to do something innovative," said Gary Moore, engineer for the city of L.A. "We've developed standard plans, we've done the details, we've done the engineering to enable the city or a developer to use the plans to implement the desired solution."

Developed in partnership with the city's Board of Public Works, Bureau of Sanitation and Bureau of Engineering, the standard plans have been in the works for six months and will be available for free online starting July 9 at

"There are more than 6,500 miles of streets in Los Angeles," Moore said of the plans that will be used for street reconstruction, street widening, landscape medians and other projects. "There's a lot of potential."

-- Susan Carpenter

Photo: Don Kelsen / Los Angeles Times