A June 7, 2013 email note from Richard Klein, Community and Environmental Defense Services
An October, 2011 Audit of the Severn River watershed revealed that hundreds of stormwater ponds and other practices had failed due to a lack of maintenance. The Audit then uncovered the cause – a 2001 decision by Anne Arundel County to severely cut-back stormwater staff from seven inspectors to one!
As a result of diminished inspections little maintenance has been performed and stormwater benefits steadily declined. In the Severn River watershed alone the stormwater failures have allowed 25,000 pounds of nutrients to needlessly enter the waterway each year. In fact, funding stormwater inspection programs is THE most cost-effective use of public dollars to minimize stormwater pollution releases into our waterways.
Since the 2011 Audit was released it has served to greatly expand public awareness of the importance of clean water law enforcement. Nothing illustrates this better than the recent announcement that the County will quadruple their stormwater inspection staff.
Watershed Audit Quickest, Cheapest Way To Improve Water Quality
Through the CEDS Watershed Audit all existing activities are evaluated for compliance with Clean Water laws. Due to many years of underfunded enforcement budgets, large volumes of pollution are entering our waterways from sources no longer in compliance with these laws. A typical watershed is about 70 square miles in size and can be audited by a few volunteers or staff in no more than a week. The Audit procedures are easy to learn and cost very little. For further detail on Watershed Audits visitceds.org/audit. To see if a compliance problem exists in your watershed call 1-800-773-4571 or simply reply to this message to schedule a no-cost initial Audit
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