Let’s review. 

Our introduction was Marvel-lous.
Our ag blog was bovine.
And our wastewater blog
          whipped the grime on time.

So, what’s up next
in our campaign to explain
how the brand new WIP
          will change the game for the James? Rain

That’s right, this week we have a verse on one of the trickiest sources of pollution reaching our river — Stormwater runoff. When rain hits the ground and begins to flow towards our rivers and streams, it picks up whatever pollution it finds. That includes the muck of motor oil and road salt from city streets, dirt and debris from poorly managed construction sites, and runaway fertilizer from your own front lawn, plus whatever your neighbor’s dog may have left for you. (He’s still a good dog, Brent. 14/10.)

How do we stop this noxious stew laying siege to our streams? It starts with a lot of small choices by a lot of smart people to prevent pollution before it begins. Our River Hero Homes program can help get you started. Take the pledge to change the James by cutting back on fertilizer and picking up after your pets. When there’s less gunk on the ground, there’s less for stormwater to find.

Less mess? No Stress! But here’s the next test. Encourage your community to keep it green. Green spaces are a cost-effective way to slow the flow of stormwater and soak up the excess water and nutrients. Planting trees, restoring natural lands, and promoting green infrastructure are all great ways to reduce erosion and prevent polluted runoff. Whether it’s revitalizing a neighborhood stream or planting a rain garden in your own backyard, Virginia has programs like the Stormwater Local Assistance Fund and the Virginia Conservation Assistance Program to help cover the cost.

Planning for stormwater comes with great co-benefits. It promotes cleaner, greener neighborhoods that are inviting places to live, work, and play. It also helps us plan for the future of climate change, where stronger storms can lead to more frequent flooding if we’re not prepared. By tackling stormwater with a team effort, Virginia’s WIP keeps us on track for healthier rivers now and safer communities down the road.

How can you help? Let’s wrap this porous blog with a chorus:

  • Help the Rain Drain – Keep storm drains clear of trash and debris.
  • Scoop Up After Pups – Two words. Fecal. Bacteria. Eww.
  • Use Fertilizer Wiser So It Doesn’t Buildup – Get your lawn tested and only apply what you need when you need it.
  • Embrace Green Space- Bring more natural filters to your neighborhood by supporting programs that help cover the cost.
  • Build Smart from the Start – Demand strong guidelines for development projects that protect water quality while allowing flood-smart communities to grow.
  • Add Your Name for the James, and We’ll All Do Our Part! Take a sec to click the link below.