Effective Green & Gray Infrastructure
Most people are familiar with “gray” water infrastructure — the hard, concrete and metal pipes, holding tanks, pumps, water tunnels, and treatment plants. These systems play a key role in managing drinking water, wastewater and combined-sewer systems.
“Green” infrastructure is a newer approach to stormwater management that mimics nature by capturing stormwater so it can either be reused or seep into the ground where it falls, rather than flowing into underground sewer and storm pipes. Methods for stormwater capture include rain gardens, pervious pavement, planted swales, and storage containers such as cisterns and rain barrels. Green-infrastructure features can help reduce stress on water systems and can provide good local jobs, as well as making the communities where they’re installed healthier and more beautiful.
Both gray and green infrastructure are important components of water infrastructure systems statewide. Communities with combined sewer systems in particular will be evaluating gray- and green-infrastructure approaches to come up with the best combination that meets regulatory requirements cost-effectively and in a manner that provides tangible community benefits.
Water Infrastructure in New Jersey’s CSO Cities: Elevating the Importance of Upgrading New Jersey’s Urban Water Systems
This report describes the new regulatory requirement facing the 21 New Jersey municipalities that have combined sewer systems, the characteristics of those cities and their combined sewer systems in particular, and the challenges they face in upgrading the systems. Prepared by Daniel Van Abs, PhD., for New Jersey Future. 2014.
Roxanne Qualls presentation on Cincinnati’s Water Infrastructure
This powerpoint by Roxanne Qualls, former mayor of Cincinnati, describes metropolitan Cincinnati’s holistic approach to drinking water, wastewater and stormwater including its successful programs to resolve combined sewer overflows. 2014.
Scalable Solutions to Local Challenges
This practical toolkit, which features scalable tools and design templates, aims to help municipal managers and decision-makers begin the process of exploring and implementing green infrastructure. 2015.