EPA synthesizes the various ways costs and benefits of gray and green infrastructure can be assessed and compared. A must read for newcomers to the issue; it makes a powerful case, and shows how others can do the same. Complete document offers case studies, tools, calculators and extensive resource materials.
The following methodology was developed to identify potential flooding issues and solutions for communities in the Chicago region. The aproach uses a data-driven process at the planning level to integrate stormwater management into decisions about land use and development.
Trees and forests have a natural ability to reduce stormwater runoff. As more and more communities encourage or even require the use of natural vegetative systems as part of their stormwater management programs, municipal planners and engineers require technical tools that allow them to quantify the stormwater benefits of this “green infrastructure” in a way that works seamlessly with existing models and methods. This fact sheet summarizes methods and tools to account for the ability of green infrastructure to reduce runoff and remove pollutants. It is organized into two categories:
- Methods for incorporating green infrastructure into runoff models
- Models and calculators for estimating the functions, benefits, and economics of green infrastructure
The Green Build-out Model is a planning tool that quantifies the cumulative stormwater management benefits of trees and green roofs for different coverage assumptions across the District of Columbia. It calculates potential reductions in stormwater runoff within the municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) and the combined sewer system (CSS) that contribute to water quality impairment in the Nation’s capital.
This online interactive climate simulation toolkit is a system dynamics simulation that tracks the stocks of green and grey infrastructure based on a user’s decisions about allocation of investment. The user can also set different rainfall regimes and modify the assumptions about the effectiveness of different types of green infrastructure at capturing and retaining water to help answer “what if” questions about investing in green infrastructure. A range of benefits beyond stormwater management are tracked and reported, including economic, social and environmental performance outputs.
This page includes links to commercial and freeware/public software for tree inventory and management. Updated October 2014.
This EPA Green Infrastructure modeling tool supports planning and design decisions for site designers, planners, or environmental managers on a range of scales. Scales range from setting a green infrastructure target for an entire watershed to designing a green infrastructure practice for a particular site or an entire watershed. Some models can predict the water quality and water quantity impacts of green infrastructure approaches. These models cannot only predict the cost for green infrastructure but also benefits such as improvements in air quality and reduction of energy consumption. These models range from simple to complex.
This study examines the economics of stormwater infrastructure by conducting a cost-effectiveness analysis of four types of green stormwater infrastructure and two conventional infrastructure analogues. Six scenarios were modeled for redeveloping existing urban right of ways and alleys to retain and infiltrate stormwater onsite.
The Green Values® Stormwater Toolbox was originally developed primarily for use by planners, engineers and other municipal staff. This tool is utilized by entering information specific to the particular lot or land locations, size, coverage type, conventional development and then determining a runoff reduction goal. This toolbox is accompanied by a list of state, local and national standards relative to runoff and stormwater management. Once information is entered into the National Stormwater Calculators, green improvement options and advanced options allow the users to fine tune their goals as well as estimate benefits and costs for those green infrastructure improvements.