Nov 28, 2007

Storm Water Standards to Reduce Erosion

City council members hope that new storm water standards in Charlotte, N.C., will help reduce erosion and runoff.

Charlotte, N.C., has a new set of standards for erosion and runoff control, thanks to Monday’s city council meeting.

Council members unanimously adopted the standards, collectively called the Post-Construction Controls Ordinance. The goal of these standards is to require developers to decrease the quantities of sediment and pollution running into streams, ponds and lakes by implementing features like retention ponds, buffers and green-space minimums. As of July 1, 2008, a staff of people implemented by the ordinance will review blueprints and sites to ensure these compliance measures.

The staff positions, which will be increased from three to five positions for the 2008-09 fiscal year, will cost the city $420,000 collectively. The city hopes to make up that money, however, through permit fees.

Charlotte officials estimate that approximately 75% of streams are polluted or sediment-laden, and the city’s storm water department is scrambling to keep up with more than 6,000 backlogged requests for help with these issues.