Soils are a major contributor to clean water and keeping water in its place.
But, as cities developed on former forest and prairie land, humans engineered ways to “manage” the water flow. However, many cities realize that working with nature, and its soil, is healthier and less expensive for the environment. Here are some tips from the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) about “what can the average citizen do?
Step 1: Conserve the soil
Like any sustainable strategy, the most important starting point is conservation. Conserving our green spaces and caring for the soil that’s already in place is central to creating healthy ground for improved stormwater management. This includes reducing soil compaction and erosion, and promoting soil health. Strategies for improving soil include:
• Amending soils with compost
• Letting leaves and grass clippings decompose in place to restore soil organic matter
• Using compost socks and berms to prevent erosion in areas under construction
• Planting trees and native plants in areas where soil is bare
Step 2: Install a rain garden or other green infrastructure feature
Residential rain gardens not only reduce flooding in your neighborhood but can increase property values and are a charming landscape feature. Other green infrastructure tools for reducing runoff include use of rain barrels or cisterns, disconnecting downspouts, and installing green roofs. Many municipalities have developed incentive programs to share the cost of construction.
Step 3: Create a community
The impact of these strategies will be enhanced if they are implemented on a community level. Clustering rain gardens in a designated area such as a neighborhood block allows pooling of resources, the potential for shared maintenance, and a greater collective impact on runoff.
Tips for inspiring community stormwater projects:
Communicate! Talk to your neighbors or hold a community event to educate the neighborhood about the issues surrounding stormwater runoff.
Collaborate! Reach out to landscapers, nurseries, and other vendors who might be willing to give you bulk discounts for group projects. Local non-profits or government agencies may also be helpful.
Educate! Post signage in yards or parking strips where projects have been built to bring attention to the economic and environmental values of green infrastructure.
Share! Organize a tour of your rain garden project to inspire other communities to create their own projects.
For more information on using your soil more wisely, visit soils.org/discover-soils/soils-in-the-city. Topics under Soils in the City include Community Gardens, Green Infrastructure, Green Roofs, and Soil Contaminants. SSSA also has an informational blog about soils, called Soils Matter, at http://soilsmatter.wordpress.com/
Susan Fisk | newswise
Listening in: Acoustic monitoring devices detect illegal hunting and logging
14.12.2017 | Gesellschaft für Ökologie e.V.
How fires are changing the tundra’s face
12.12.2017 | Gesellschaft für Ökologie e.V.
A study carried out by an international team of researchers and published in the journal Physical Review X shows that ion-trap technologies available today are suitable for building large-scale quantum computers. The scientists introduce trapped-ion quantum error correction protocols that detect and correct processing errors.
In order to reach their full potential, today’s quantum computer prototypes have to meet specific criteria: First, they have to be made bigger, which means...
Since 2016, German and Spanish researchers, among them scientists from the University of Göttingen, have been hunting for exoplanets with the “Carmenes”...
DNA molecules that follow specific instructions could offer more precise molecular control of synthetic chemical systems, a discovery that opens the door for engineers to create molecular machines with new and complex behaviors.
Researchers have created chemical amplifiers and a chemical oscillator using a systematic method that has the potential to embed sophisticated circuit...
MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.
Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...
Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...
11.12.2017 | Event News
08.12.2017 | Event News
07.12.2017 | Event News
18.12.2017 | Life Sciences
18.12.2017 | Materials Sciences
18.12.2017 | Life Sciences