As part of efforts to promote cities’ use of green infrastructure, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency points to such practices as pervious and permeable pavements—plus rain gardens, green roofs, infiltration plants and rain harvesting—as wet weather management tools that are cost-effective, sustainable and can reduce stormwater runoff polluting the nation’s waterways.
In addition to protecting health by decreasing water pollution, green infrastructure provides many community benefits, including increased economic activity and neighborhood revitalization, job creation, energy savings and increased recreational and green space. EPA Deputy Administrator Bob Perciasepe announced the agency’s agenda in late-April at a Green Street, Green Jobs conference focused on fostering green infrastructure in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area. “Green infrastructure changes improve the health of our waters while creating local jobs, saving communities money and making them healthier and more prosperous places to raise a family and start a business,” he noted.
EPA will work with local governments, watershed groups, tribes and other stakeholders in 10 cities that have utilized green infrastructure and have plans for additional projects. The agency will encourage and support expanded use of green infrastructure in these cities, highlighting them as models for municipalities around the country: Austin, Texas; Boston; Cleveland; Denver; Jacksonville, Fla.; Kansas City; Los Angeles; Puyallup, Wash.; Syracuse, N.Y.; and Washington, D.C., as well as neighboring Anacostia Watershed communities.