Runoff from stormwater continues to be a major cause of water pollution in urban areas. It carries trash, bacteria, heavy metals, and other pollutants through storm drains into local waterways. To meet this challenge, many communities are installing green infrastructure systems to bolster their capacity to manage stormwater. By doing so, communities are becoming more resilient and achieving environmental, social, and economic benefits.
Green infrastructure elements can be woven into a community at several scales. Neighborhood scale green infrastructure could include acres of open space outside a city center, planting rain gardens near a residential housing complex. When green infrastructure systems are installed throughout a community, a city or across a regional watershed, they can provide cleaner air and water as well as significant value for the community with flood protection, diverse habitat, and beautiful green spaces.