Adopted Act 167 Plans
5. Swamp Creek - Act 167 Plan, adopted
Phase I Act 167 Plans
Stormwater Runoff - Its Problems and Its Solutions
The water that runs off the land into surface waters during and immediately following a rainfall event is referred to as stormwater. In a watershed undergoing urban expansion, the volume of stormwater resulting from a particular rainfall event increases because of the reduction in pervious land area (i.e., natural land being covered by pavement, concrete, or buildings). That is, the alteration of natural land cover and land contours to residential, commercial, industrial and even crop land uses results in decreased infiltration of rainfall and an increased rate, volume of runoff and pollution.
As development has increased, so has the problem of dealing with the increased quantity of stormwater runoff. Failure to properly manage this runoff has resulted in greater flooding, stream channel erosion and siltation, as well as reduced groundwater recharge. This process occurs every time the land development process causes changes in land surface conditions.
History has shown that individual land development projects are often viewed as separate incidents, and not necessarily a part of a "a bigger picture". This has also been the case when the individual land development projects are scattered throughout a watershed (and in many different municipalities). However, it is now being observed and verified that this cumulative nature of individual land surface changes dramatically affects flooding conditions. This cumulative effect of development in some areas has resulted in flooding of both small and large streams with property damages running into the millions of dollars and even causing loss of life. Therefore, given the distributed and cumulative nature of the land alteration process, a comprehensive (i.e., watershed-level) approach must be taken if a reasonable and practical management and implementation approach and/or strategy is to be successful.