Stormwater Quality

Stormwater quality has direct impact on public health and on the ecological balance of our enviroment. Pollutants present on earth's surface can be transported with stormwater runoff via existing drainage infrastructure impacting water quality in natural resources such as rivers, lakes, reservoirs and oceans. HELM implements a focus on stormwater quality as part of our holistic engineering approach. We seek to provide water quality enhancements using approaches such as Holistic Land Management and Low-Impact Development HELM can assist municipalities in both developing and implementing stormwater management programs in accordance with the Federal Clean Water Act and the National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES). NPDES permits for stormwater requires a range of practices that municipalities must undertake to reduce pollution in stormwater runoff. To achieve NPDES permitting objectives, HELM encourages decentralized, Low Impact Development (LID) strategies for managing both the quantity and quality of storm water runoff. LID strategies are integrated urban-based watershed management treatments that achieve a bundling of benefits, including: the reduction of storm water pollution; repair of the hydrologic cycle; an increase in natural wildlife habitat; reduced heat island effects; and more sustainable, greener urban areas.

HELM also has extensive experience with storm water quality including NPDES permitting, SWPPP plans and MS4 permitting. We recognize that stormwater is a resource that can be used to balance natural phenomena to reduce adverse symptomatic impacts on the constructed environment. For example, instead of constructing infrastructure treatments to control and quickly divert stormwater, we recommend an approach that constructs Low Impact Development solutions such as harvesting stormwater, to then be used to irrigate either natural or manmade landscapes. Stormwater can also be used to assist the process of mitigating environmentally impacted sites. Strategies to harvest water are similar to flood control infrastructure, but typically do not require heavy fortification and the associated costs.