EPA’s RainWorks Challenge brings pavement, harvesting practice to school

Sources: Environmental Protection Agency; CP staff

Registration continues through September 30 for EPA’s fifth annual Campus RainWorks Challenge, where college and university student teams use campuses as labs to develop green infrastructure systems to reduce stormwater pollution and build resilience.

“Stormwater is one of the nation’s most significant water challenges, with increasing amounts of runoff polluting streams, rivers and lakes,” says EPA Office of Water Deputy Assistant Administrator Joel Beauvais. “Through the RainWorks Challenge, EPA invites future planners, designers and engineers to apply their classroom learning and help us solve stormwater management problems through innovative green infrastructure design and technology.” Green infrastructure includes permeable materials, green streets, rain gardens and rain harvesting systems, he adds, noting how communities are increasingly using such features to supplement their “gray” infrastructure—pipes, filters and ponds.

2016 RainWorks Challenge winners will be announced in spring 2017. Each first-place team will earn a student prize of $2,000 and a faculty prize of $3,000 to support green infrastructure research or training. Second-place teams will win $1,000 for student teams and $2,000 for faculty research.