The Stormwater Blog 

Contech Stormwater experts discussing Low Impact Development, Onsite Water Management, Rainwater Harvesting and all things Stormwater.


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How to Size a Hydrodynamic Separator
Hydrodynamic Separators (HDS) have been used in the stormwater industry for over 20 years.  They are effective at removing TSS, hydrocarbons, and trash and debris from stormwater runoff and are often used for standalone treatment or pretreatment to filtration, detention, infiltration and rainwater harvesting system.  With the varied applications for HDS units comes a multitude of sizing options. 
Hydrodynamic Separation Devices: Online Vs. Offline
The question of whether a hydrodynamic separator should be online vs. offline is something that engineers and stormwater treatment manufacturers deal with on a daily basis.  Online systems allow storm events that are greater than the design storm to be bypassed through the treatment unit, eliminating the need for a separate bypass structure.  This results in fewer structures and a smaller system footprint; which leads to a lower landed cost.  
All Stormwater Particles Are Not The Same Part 2: Particle Shape And Density

EPA selected a removal standard of 80% total suspended solids (TSS) removal as the target pollutant of concern due to high TSS concentrations ubiquitous impact on water quality and degradation to aquatic habitat. Many other pollutants of concern are particle-bound, and TSS is thereby a surrogate for other pollutants. Testing methodologies for stormwater control measures (SCMs) in respects to TSS can vary greatly. There are many sediment characteristics that should be considered when evaluating a SCM for TSS removal performance to ensure apples and apples are being compared among removal efficiencies for SCMs.

5 Key Concepts For Developing Local Stormwater Regulations

Drafting stormwater regulations that are clear, comprehensive and effective is crucial to protecting and preserving receiving waters.  The Clean Water Act has yielded a wide spectrum of local stormwater regulations and policies, but many leave something to be desired when it comes to actually mitigating the impacts of urban runoff.  It has been our experience that many local regulations are missing core components that are invaluable in achieving our ultimate goal.

Field Testing Stormwater BMPs: The Pros & Cons
As an industry, we’ve acquired a vast amount of knowledge about stormwater, its adverse impacts, and the best management practices (BMPs) implemented to mitigate them. However, the spirited debate with regard to whether the field or the laboratory is the best arena for evaluating BMP performance refuses to yield to consensus. Here are some of the arguments for and against field testing.
 Stormwater BMP Testing – A Two-Pronged Strategy
Given the limitations and challenges inherent of BMP evaluations, whether done in the field or the laboratory, it’s a wonder we bother with either. However, the intent of identifying these issues is not to discourage evaluation, but to foster understanding so as to encourage BMP evaluations to be structured in a manner that yields sound results.
What Does 80% TSS Removal Mean?
The intent of LEED Sustainable Sites Credit 6.2 is “to limit disruption and pollution of natural water flows by managing stormwater runoff,” and the requirements necessary for meeting this intent are clearly spelled out: capture 90% of the average annual rainfall and treat it by removing 80% of the total suspended solids (TSS). While the rating system does not define TSS it does recommend reliance on field monitoring data that is compliant with the Technology Acceptance Reciprocity Partnership (TARP) protocol or the Technology Acceptance Protocol-Ecology (TAPE) when screening stormwater best management practices (BMPs).
Lab Testing Stormwater BMPs: The Pros & Cons
As an industry, we’ve acquired a vast amount of knowledge about stormwater, its adverse impacts and the best management practices (BMPs) implemented to mitigate them. However, the spirited debate with regard to whether the field or the laboratory is the best arena for evaluating BMP performance refuses to yield to consensus. Here are some of the arguments for and against laboratory testing...
Why We Need a National BMP Evaluation Program
As the economic downturn continues to shrink state coffers budget cuts have rendered numerous government programs nearly inoperable. Unfortunately, stormwater management and other water quality initiatives have not been spared from a similar fate.

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