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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States 4 Monitoring and Modeling As part of its statement of task, the committee was asked to consider several aspects of stormwater monitoring, including how useful the activity is, what should be monitored and when and where, and how benchmarks should be established. As noted in Chapter 2, the stormwater monitoring requirements under the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) stormwater program are variable and generally sparse, which has led to considerable skepticism about their usefulness. This chapter first considers the value of the data collected over the years by municipalities and makes suggestions for improvement. It then does the same for industrial stormwater monitoring, which has lagged behind the municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) program both in requirements and implementation. It should be noted upfront that this chapter does not discuss the fine details of MS4 and industrial monitoring that pertain to regulatory compliance—questions such as should the average end of pipe concentrations meet water quality standards, how many exceedances should be allowed per year, or should effluent concentrations be compared to acute or chronic criteria. Individual benchmarks and effluent limits for specific chemicals emanating from specific industries are not provided. The current state of MS4 and industrial stormwater monitoring and the paucity of high quality data are such that it is premature and in many cases impossible to make such determinations. Rather, the chapter suggests both how to monitor an individual industry and how to determine benchmarks and effluent limits for industrial categories. It suggests how monitoring requirements should be tailored to accommodate the risk level of an individual industrial discharger. Finally, it makes numerous technical suggestions for improving the monitoring of MS4s, building on the data already submitted and analyzed as part of the National Stormwater Quality Database. Policy recommendations about the monitoring of both industries and MS4s are found in Chapter 6. This chapter’s emphasis on monitoring of stormwater should not be interpreted as a disinterest in other types of monitoring, such as biomonitoring of receiving waters, precipitation measurements, or determination of land cover. Indeed, these latter activities are extremely important (they are introduced in the preceding chapter) and they underpin the new permitting program proposed in Chapter 6 (especially biological monitoring). Stormwater management would benefit most substantially from a well-balanced monitoring program that encompasses chemical, biological, and physical parameters from outfalls to receiving waters. Currently, however, decisions about stormwater management are usually made with incomplete information; for example, there are continued recommendations by many that street cleaning will solve a municipality’s problems, even when the municipality does not have any information on the sources of the material being removed.
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States A second charge to the committee was to define the elements of a “protocol” to link pollutants in stormwater discharges to ambient water quality criteria. As described in Chapter 3, many processes connect sources of pollution to an effect observed in a downstream receiving water. More and more, these processes can be represented in watershed models, which are the key to linking stormwater sources to effects observed in receiving waters. The latter half of the chapter explores the current capability of models to make such links, including simple models, statistical and conceptual models, and more involved mechanistic models. At the present time, associating a single discharger with degraded in-stream conditions is generally not possible because of the state of both modeling and monitoring of stormwater. MONITORING OF MS4s EPA’s regulations for stormwater monitoring of MS4s is very limited, in that only the application requirements are stated [see 40 CFR § 122.26(d)]. The regulations require the MS4 program to identify five to ten stormwater discharge outfalls and to collect representative stormwater data for conventional and priority toxic pollutants from three representative storm events using both grab and composite sampling methods. Each sampled storm event must have a rainfall of at least 0.1 inch, must be preceded by at least 72 hours of a dry period, and the rain event must be within 50 percent of the average or median of the per storm volume and duration for the region. While the measurement of flow is not specifically required, an MS4 must make estimates of the event mean concentrations (EMCs) for pollutants discharged from all outfalls to surface waters, and in order to determine EMCs, flow needs to be measured or calculated. Other than these requirements, the exact type of MS4 monitoring that is to be conducted during the permit term is left to the discretion of the permitting authority. EPA has not issued any guidance on what would be considered an adequate MS4 monitoring program for permitting authorities to evaluate compliance. Some guidance for MS4 monitoring based on desired management questions has been developed locally (for example, see the SCCWRP Technical Report No. 419, SMC 2004, Model Monitoring Program for MS4s in Southern California). In the absence of national guidance from EPA, the MS4 monitoring programs for Phase I MS4s vary widely in structure and objectives, and Phase II MS4 programs largely do not perform any monitoring at all. The types of monitoring typically contained in Phase I MS4 permits include the (1) wet weather outfall screening and monitoring to characterize stormwater flows, (2) dry weather outfall screening and monitoring under illicit discharge detection and elimination programs, (3) biological monitoring to determine storm water impacts, (4) ambient water quality monitoring to characterize water quality conditions, and (5) stormwater control measure (SCM) effectiveness monitoring.
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States The Nationwide Stormwater Quality Database Stormwater monitoring data collected by a portion of Phase I MS4s has been evaluated for years by the University of Alabama and the Center for Watershed Protection and compiled in a database called the Nationwide Stormwater Quality Database (NSQD). These data were collected in order to describe the characteristics of stormwater on a national level, to provide guidance for future sampling needs, and to enhance local stormwater management activities in areas with limited data. The MS4 monitoring data collected over the past ten years from more than 200 municipalities throughout the country have great potential in characterizing the quality of stormwater runoff and comparing it against historical benchmarks. Version 3 of the NSQD is available online at: http://unix.eng.ua.edu/~rpitt/Research/ms4/mainms4.shtml. It contains data from more than 8,500 events and 100 municipalities throughout the country. About 5,800 events are associated with homogeneous land uses, while the remainder are for mixed land uses. The general approach to data collection was to contact EPA regional offices to obtain state contacts for the MS4 data, then the individual municipalities with Phase I permits were targeted for data collection. Selected outfall data from the International BMP Database were also included in NSQD version 3, eliminating any source area and any treated stormwater samples. Some of the older National Urban Runoff Program (NURP) (EPA, 1983) data were also included in the NSQD, along with some data from specialized U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) stormwater monitoring activities in order to better represent nationwide conditions and additional land uses. Because there were multiple sources of information, quality assurance and quality control reviews were very important to verify the correctness of data added to the database, and to ensure that no duplicate entries were added. The NSQD includes sampling location information such as city, state, land use, drainage area, and EPA Rain Zone, as well as date, season, and rain depth. The constituents commonly measured for in stormwater include total suspended solids (TSS), 5-day biological oxygen demand (BOD5), chemical oxygen demand (COD), total phosphorus (TP), total Kjeldahl nitrogen (TKN), nitrite plus nitrate (NO2+NO3), total copper (Cu), total lead (Pb), and total zinc (Zn). Less information is available for many other constituents (including filterable heavy metals and bacteria). Figure 4-1 is a map showing the EPA Rain Zones in the United States, along with the locations of the communities contributing to the NSQD, version 3. Table 4-1 shows the number of samples for each land use and for each Rain Zone. This table does not show the number of mixed land-use site samples. Rain Zones 8 and 9 have very few samples, and institutional and open-space areas are poorly represented. However, residential, commercial, industrial, and freeway data are plentiful, except for the few Rain Zones noted above. Land use has an important impact on the quality of stormwater. For example, the concentrations of heavy metals are higher for industrial land-use areas
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States TABLE 4-1 Number of Samples per Land Use and EPA Rain Zone Single Land Use 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Total Commercial 234 484 131 66 42 37 64 0 22 1080 Freeways 0 241 14 0 262 189 28 0 0 734 Industrial 100 327 90 51 83 74 146 0 22 893 Institutional 9 46 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 55 Open Space 68 37 0 18 0 2 0 0 0 125 Residential 294 1470 290 122 105 32 532 7 81 2933 Total 705 2605 525 257 492 334 770 7 125 5820 Note: there are no mixed-use sites in this table. SOURCE: National Stormwater Quality Database. due to manufacturing processes and other activities that generate these materials. Fecal coliform concentrations are relatively high for residential and mixed residential land uses, and nitrate concentrations are higher for the freeway land use. Open-space land-use areas show consistently low concentrations for the constituents examined. Seasons could also be a factor in the variation of nutrient concentrations in stormwater due to seasonal uses of fertilizers and leaf drop occurring during the fall season. Most studies also report lower bacteria concentrations in the winter than in the summer. Lead concentrations in stormwater have also significantly decreased since the elimination of lead in gasoline (see Figure 2-6). Most of the statistical tests used are multivariate statistical evaluations that compare different constituent concentrations with land use and geographical location. More detailed discussions of the earlier NSQD results are found in various references, including Maestre et al. (2004, 2005) and Pitt et al. (2003, 2004). How to use the NSQD to Calculate Representative EMC Values EMC values were initially used during the NURP to describe typical concentrations of pollutants in stormwater for different monitoring locations and land uses. An EMC is intended to represent the average concentration for a single monitored event, usually based on flow-weighted composite sampling. It can also be calculated from discrete samples taken during an event if flow data are also available. Many individual subsamples should be taken throughout most of the event to calculate the EMC for that event. Being an overall average value, an EMC does not represent possible extremes that may occur during an event. The NSQD includes individual EMC values from about 8,500 separate events. Stormwater managers typically want a representative single value for a land use for their area. As such, they typically evaluate a series of individual
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States FIGURE 4-1 Sampling Locations for Data Contained in the National Stormwater Quality Database, version 3. storm EMC values for conditions similar to those representing their site of concern. With the NSQD in a spreadsheet form, it is relatively simple to extract suitable events representing the desired conditions. However, the individual EMC values will likely have a large variability. Maestre and Pitt (2006) reviewed the NSQD data to better explain the variability according to different site and sampling conditions (land use, geographical location, season, rain depth, amount of impervious area, sampling methods, antecedent dry period, etc.). The most common significant factor was land use, with some geographical and fewer seasonal effects observed. As with the original NURP data, EMCs in the NSQD are usually expressed using medians and coefficients of variation to reflect uncertainty, assuming lognormal distributions of the EMC values. Figure 4-2 shows several lognormal probability plots for a few constituents from the NSQD. Probability plots shown as straight lines indicate that the concentrations can be represented by lognormal distributions (see Box 4-1).
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States FIGURE 4-2 Lognormal probability plots of stormwater quality data for selected constituents (pooled data from NSQD version 1.1). Fitting a known distribution is important as it helps indicate the proper statistical tests that may be conducted. Using the median EMC value in load calculations, without considering the data variability, will result in smaller mass loads compared to actual monitored conditions. This is due to the medians underrepresenting the larger concentrations that are expected to occur. The use of average EMC values will represent the larger values better, although they will still not represent the variability likely to exist. If all of the variability cannot be further explained adequately (such as being affected by rain depth), which would be highly unlikely, then a set of random calculations (such as that obtained using Monte Carlo procedures) reflecting the described probability distribution of the constituents would be the best method to use when calculating loads. Municipal Monitoring Issues As described in Chapter 2, typical MS4 monitoring requirements involve sampling during several events per year at the most common land uses in the area. Obviously, a few samples will not result in very useful data due to
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States BOX 4-1 Probability Distributions of Stormwater Data The coefficient of variation (COV) values for many constituents in the NSQD range from unusually low values of about 0.1 (for pH) to highs between 1 and 2. One objective of a data analysis procedure is to categorize the data into separate stratifications, each having small variations in the observed concentrations. The only stratification usually applied is for land use. However, further analyses indicated many differences by geographical area and some differences by season. When separated into appropriate stratifications, the COV values are reduced, ranging between about 0.5 to 1.0. With a reasonable confidence of 95 percent (α= 0.05) and power of 80 percent (β= 0.20), and a suitable allowable error goal of 25 percent, the number of samples needed to characterize these conditions would therefore range from about 25 to 50 (Burton and Pitt, 2002). In a continuing monitoring program (such as the Phase I stormwater National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System [NPDES] permit monitoring effort) characterization data will improve over time as more samples are obtained, even with only a few samples collected each year from each site. Stormwater managers have generally accepted the assumption of lognormality of stormwater constituent concentrations between the 5th and 95th percentiles. Based on this assumption, it is common to use the log-transformed EMC values to evaluate differences between land-use categories and other characteristics. Statistical inference methods, such as estimation and tests of hypothesis, and analysis of variance, require statistical information about the distribution of the EMC values to evaluate these differences. The use of the log-transformed data usually includes the location and scale parameter, but a lower-bound parameter is usually neglected. Maestre et al. (2005) conducted statistical tests using NSQD data to evaluate the lognormality assumptions of selected common constituents. It was found in almost all cases that the log-transformed data followed a straight line between the 5th and 95th percentile, as illustrated in Figure 4-3 for total dissolved solids (TDS) in residential areas. For many statistical tests focusing on the central tendency (such as for determining the concentrations that are to be used for mass balance calculations), this may be a suitable fit. As an example, the model WinSLAMM (Pitt, 1986; Pitt and Voorhees, 1995) uses a Monte Carlo component to describe the likely variability of stormwater source flow pollutant concentrations using either lognormal or normal probability distributions for each constituent. However, if the most extreme values are of importance, such as when dealing with the influence of many non-detectable values on the predicted concentrations, or determining the frequency of observations exceeding a numerical standard, a better description of the extreme values may be important. The NSQD contains many factors for each sampled event that likely affect the observed concentrations. These include such factors as seasons, geographical zones, and rain intensities. These factors may affect the shape of the probability distribution. The only way to evaluate the required number of samples in each category is by using the power of the test, where power is the probability that the test statistic will lead to a rejection of the null hypothesis (Gibbons and Chakraborti, 2003). In the NSQD, most of the data were from residential land uses. The Kolmogorov-Smirnov test was used to indicate if the cumulative empirical probability distribution of the residential stormwater constituents can be adequately represented with a lognormal distribution. The number of collected samples was sufficient to detect if the empirical distribu-
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States FIGURE 4-3 Probability plot of total dissolved solids in residential land uses (NSQD version 1.1 data). tion was located inside an interval of width 0.1 above and below the estimated cumulative probability distribution. If the interval was reduced to 0.05, the power varies between 40 and 65 percent. Another factor that must be considered is the importance of relatively small errors in the selected distribution and the problems of false-negative determinations. It may not be practical to collect as many data observations as needed when the distributions are close. Therefore, it is important to understand what types of further statistical and analysis problems may be caused by having fewer samples than optimal. For example, Figure 4-4 (total phosphorus in residential areas) shows that most of the data fall along the straight line (indicating a lognormal fit), with fewer than 10 observations (out of 933) in the tails being outside of the obvious path of the line, or a false-negative rate of about 0.01 (1 percent).
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States FIGURE 4-4 Normality test for total phosphorus in residential land uses using the NSQD. Further analyses to compare the constituent concentration distributions to other common probability distributions (normal, lognormal, gamma, and exponential) were also conducted for all land uses by Maestre et al. (2004). Most of the stormwater constituents can be assumed to follow a lognormal distribution with little error. The use of a third parameter in the estimated lognormal distribution may be needed, depending on the number of samples. When the number of samples is large per category (approximately more than 400 samples) the maximum likelihood and the two-parameter lognormal distribution better fit the empirical distribution. For large sample sizes, the L-moments method usually unacceptably truncates the distribution in the lower tail. However, when the sample size is more moderate per category (approximately between 100 and 400 samples), the three-parameter lognormal method, estimated by L-moments, better fits the empirical distribution. When the sample size is small (less than 100 samples, as is common for most stormwater programs), the use of the third parameter does not improve the fit with the empirical distribution and the common two-parameter lognormal distribution produces a better fit than the other two methods. The use of the lognormal distribution also has an advantage over the other distribution types because it can be easily transformed to a normal distribution and the data can then be correctly examined using a wide variety of statistical tests.
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States the variability of stormwater characteristics. However, during the period of a five-year permit with three samples per year, about 15 events would be sampled for each land use. While still insufficient for many analyses, this number of data points likely allows the confidence limits to be reasonably calculated for the average conditions. When many sites of the same land use are monitored for a region, substantial data may be collected during a permit cycle. This was the premise of the NSQD where MS4 data were collected for many locations throughout the country. These data were evaluated and various findings made. The following comments are partially based on these analyses, along with additional data sources. Sampling Technique and Compositing There are a variety of methods for collecting and compositing stormwater samples that can result in different values for the EMC. The first distinction is the mode of sample collection, either as grab samples or automatic sampling. Obviously, grab sampling is limited by the speed and accuracy of the individuals doing the sampling, and it is personnel intensive. It is for this reason that about 80 percent of the NSQD samples are collected using automatic samplers. Manual sampling has been observed to result in slightly lower TSS concentrations compared to automatic sampling procedures. This may occur, for example, if the manual sampling team arrives after the start of runoff and therefore misses an elevated first flush (if it exists for the site), resulting in reduced EMCs. A second important concept is how and whether the samples are combined following collection. With time-based discrete sampling, samplers (people or machines) are programmed to take an aliquot after a set period of time (usually in the range of every 15 minutes) and each aliquot is put into a separate bottle (usually 1 liter). Each bottle is processed separately, so this method can have high laboratory costs. This is the only method, however, that will characterize the changes in pollutant concentrations during the event. Time-based composite sampling refers to samplers being programmed to take an aliquot after a set period of time (as short as every 3 minutes), but then the aliquots are combined into one container prior to analysis (compositing). All parts of the event receive equal weight with this method, but the large number of aliquots can produce a reasonably accurate composite concentration. Finally, flow-weighted composite sampling refers to samplers being programmed to collect an aliquot (usually 1 liter) for a set volume of discharge. Thus, more samples are collected during the peak of the hydrograph than toward the trailing edge of the hydrograph. All of the aliquots are composited into one container, so the concentration for the event is weighted by flow. Most communities calculate their EMC values using flow-weighted composite sample analyses for more accurate mass discharge estimates compared to time-based compositing. This is especially important for areas with a first flush of very short duration, because time-composited samples may overly emphasize
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States these higher flows. An automatic sampler with flow-weighted samples, in conjunction with a bed-load sampler, is likely the most accurate sampling method, but only if the sampler can obtain a representative sample at the location (such as sampling at a cascading location, or using an automated depth-integrated sampler) (Clark et al., 2008). Time- and flow-weighted composite options have been evaluated in residential, commercial, and industrial land uses in EPA Rain Zone 2 and in industrial land uses in EPA Rain Zone 3 for the NSQD data. No significant differences were observed for BOD5 concentrations using either of the compositing schemes for any of the four categories. TSS and total lead median concentrations in EPA Rain Zone 2 were two to five times higher in concentration when time-based compositing was used instead of flow-based compositing. Nutrients in EPA Rain Zone 2 collected in residential, commercial, and industrial areas showed no significant differences using either compositing method. The only exceptions were for ammonia in residential and commercial land-use areas and total phosphorus in residential areas where time-based composite samples had higher concentrations. Metals were higher when time-based compositing was used in residential and commercial land-use areas. No differences were observed in industrial land-use areas, except for lead. Again, in most cases, mass discharges are of the most importance in order to show compliance with TMDL requirements. Flow-weighted sampling is the most accurate method to obtain these values (assuming sufficient numbers of subsamples are obtained). However, if receiving water effects are associated with short-duration high concentrations, then discrete samples need to be collected and analyzed, with no compositing of the samples during the event. Of course, this is vastly more costly and fewer events are usually monitored if discrete sampling is conducted. Numbers of Data Observations Needed The biggest issue associated with most monitoring programs is the number of data points needed. In many cases, insufficient data are collected to address the objectives of the monitoring program with a reasonable amount of confidence and power. Burton and Pitt (2002) present much guidance in determining the amount of data that should be collected. A basic equation that can be used to estimate the number of samples to characterize a set of conditions is as follows: where: n = number of samples needed. α = false-positive rate (1−α is the degree of confidence; a value of α of 0.05 is usually considered statistically significant, corresponding to a 1−α degree
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States habitat suitability changes, transitions will occur between species or assemblages. These methods may work well at the base of the trophic system (algae, phytoplankton) and for specific conditions such as DO limitations on fish communities, but the impacts of low to moderate concentrations of pollutants on aquatic ecosystems may still be poorly understood. A critical assumption in these and similar models (e.g., ecological community change resulting from physical changes to the watershed or climate) is the substitution of space for time. More detailed understanding of the mechanisms leading to a shift in ecological communities and interactions with the physical environment is necessary to develop models of transient change, stability of the shifts, and feedback to the biophysical environment. Given these limitations, it should be noted that statistical databases on species tolerance to a range of aquatic conditions have been compiled that will allow the development of habitat suitability mapping as a mechanism for (1) targeting ecosystem restoration, (2) determining vulnerable sites (for use in application of the Endangered Species Act), and (3) assessing aquatic ecosystem impairment and “best use” relative to reference sites. *** Stormwater models have been developed to meet a range of objectives, including small-scale hydraulic design (e.g., siting and sizing a detention pond), estimation of potential contributions of stormwater pollutants from different land covers and locations using empirically generated EMC, and large watershed hydrology and gross pollutant loading. The ability to associate a given discharger with a particular waterbody impairment is limited by the scale and complexity of watersheds (i.e., there maybe multiple discharge interactions); by the ability of a model to accurately reproduce the distribution function of discharge events and their cumulative impacts (as opposed to focusing only on design storms of specific return periods); and by the availability of monitoring data of sufficient number and design to characterize basic processes (e.g., buildup/wash-off), to parameterize the models, and to validate model predictions. In smaller urban catchments with few dominant dischargers and significant impervious area, current modeling capabilities may be sufficient to associate the cumulative impact of discharge to waterbody impairment. However, many impaired waterbodies have larger, more heterogeneous stormwater sources, with impacts that are complex functions of current and past conditions. The level of sampling that would be necessary to support linked model calibration and verification using current measurement technologies is both time-consuming and expensive. In order to develop a more consistent capability to support stormwater permitting needs, there should be increased investment in improving model paradigms, especially the practice and methods of model linkage as described above, and in stormwater monitoring. The latter may require investment in a new generation of sensors that can sample at temporal resolutions that can adjust to characterize low flow and the dynamics of storm flow, but are sufficiently
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States inexpensive and autonomous to be deployed in multiple locations from distributed sources to receiving waterbodies of interest. Finally, as urban areas extend to encompass progressively lower-density development, the interactions of surface water and groundwater become more critical to the cumulative impact of stormwater on impaired waterbodies. EPA needs to ensure continuous support and development of their water quality models and spatial data infrastructure. Beyond this, a set of distributed watershed models has been developed that can resolve the location and position of parcels within hydrologic flow fields; these are being modified for use as urban stormwater models. These models avoid the pitfalls of lumping, but they require much greater volumes of spatial data, provided by current remote sensing technology (e.g., lidar, airborne digital optical and infrared sensors) as well as the emerging set of in-stream sensor systems. While these methods are not yet operational or widespread, they should be further investigated and tested for their capabilities to support stormwater management. CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS This chapter addresses what might be the two weakest areas of the stormwater program—monitoring and modeling of stormwater. The MS4 and particularly the industrial stormwater monitoring programs suffer from (1) a paucity of data, (2) inconsistent sampling techniques, (3) a lack of analyses of available data and guidance on how permittees should be using the data to improve stormwater management decisions, and (4) requirements that are difficult to relate to the compliance of individual dischargers. The current state of stormwater modeling is similarly limited. Stormwater modeling has not evolved enough to consistently say whether a particular discharger can be linked to a specific waterbody impairment, although there are many correlative studies showing how parameters co-vary in important but complex and poorly understood ways (see Chapter 3). Some quantitative predictions can be made, particularly those that are based on well-supported causal relationships of a variable that responds to changes in a relatively simple driver (e.g., modeling how a runoff hydrograph or pollutant loading change in response to increased impervious land cover). However, in almost all cases, the uncertainty in the modeling and the data, the scale of the problems, and the presence of multiple stressors in a watershed make it difficult to assign to any given source a specific contribution to water quality impairment. More detailed conclusions and recommendations about monitoring and modeling are given below. Because of a ten-year effort to collect and analyze monitoring data from MS4s nationwide, the quality of stormwater from urbanized areas is well characterized. These results come from many thousands of storm events, systematically compiled and widely accessible; they form a robust dataset of utility to theoreticians and practitioners alike. These data make it possible to
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States accurately estimate the EMC of many pollutants. Additional data are available from other stormwater permit holders that were not originally included in the database and from ongoing projects, and these should be acquired to augment the database and improve its value in stormwater management decision-making. Industry should monitor the quality of stormwater discharges from certain critical industrial sectors in a more sophisticated manner, so that permitting authorities can better establish benchmarks and technology-based effluent guidelines. Many of the benchmark monitoring requirements and effluent guidelines for certain industrial subsectors are based on inaccurate and old information. Furthermore, there has been no nationwide compilation and analysis of industrial benchmark data, as has occurred for MS4 monitoring data, to better understand typical stormwater concentrations of pollutants from various industries. The absence of accurate benchmarks and effluent guidelines for critical industrial sectors discharging stormwater may explain the lack of enforcement by permitting authorities, as compared to the vigorous enforcement within the wastewater discharge program. Industrial monitoring should be targeted to those sites having the greatest risk associated with their stormwater discharges. Many industrial sites have no or limited exposure to runoff and should not be required to undertake extensive monitoring. Visual inspections should be made, and basic controls should be implemented at these areas. Medium-risk industrial sites should conduct monitoring so that a sufficient number of storms are measured over the life of the permit for comparison to regional benchmarks. Again, visual inspections and basic controls are needed for these sites, along with specialized controls to minimize discharges of the critical pollutants. Stormwater from high-risk industrial sites needs to be continuously monitored, similar to current point source monitoring practices. The use of a regionally calibrated stormwater model and random monitoring of the lower-risk areas will likely require additional monitoring. Continuous, flow-weighted sampling methods should replace the traditional collection of stormwater data using grab samples. Data obtained from too few grab samples are highly variable, particularly for industrial monitoring programs, and subject to greater uncertainly because of experimenter error and poor data-collection practices. In order to use stormwater data for decision making in a scientifically defensible fashion, grab sampling should be abandoned as a credible stormwater sampling approach for virtually all applications. It should be replaced by more accurate and frequent continuous sampling methods that are flow weighted. Flow-weighted composite monitoring should continue for the duration of the rain event. Emerging sensor systems that provide high temporal resolution and real-time estimates for specific pollutants should be further investigated, with the aim of providing lower costs and more extensive monitoring systems to sample both streamflow and constituent loads.
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States Flow monitoring and on-site rainfall monitoring need to be included as part of stormwater characterization monitoring. The additional information associated with flow and rainfall data greatly enhance the usefulness of the much more expensive water quality monitoring. Flow monitoring should also be correctly conducted, with adequate verification and correct base-flow subtraction methods applied. Using regional rainfall data from locations distant from the monitoring location is likely to be a major source of error when rainfall factors are being investigated. The measurement, quality assurance, and maintenance of long-term precipitation records are both vital and nontrivial to stormwater management. Whether a first flush of contaminants occurs at the start of a rainfall event depends on the intensity of rainfall, the land use, and the specific pollutant. First flushes are more common for smaller sites with greater imperviousness and thus tend to be associated with more intense land uses such as commercial areas. Even though a site may have a first flush of a constituent of concern, it is still important that any SCM be designed to treat as much of the runoff from the site as possible. In many situations, elevated discharges may occur later in an event associated with delayed periods of peak rainfall intensity. Stormwater runoff in arid and semi-arid climates demonstrates a seasonal first-flush effect (i.e., the dirtiest storms are the first storms of the season). In these cases, it is important that SCMs are able to adequately handle these flows. As an example, early spring rains mixed with snowmelt may occur during periods when wet detention ponds are still frozen, hindering their performance. The first fall rains in the southwestern regions of the United States may occur after extended periods of dry weather. Some SCMs, such as street cleaning targeting leaf removal, may be more effective before these rains than at other times of the year. Watershed models are useful tools for predicting downstream impacts from urbanization and designing mitigation to reduce those impacts, but they are incomplete in scope and typically do not offer definitive causal links between polluted discharges and downstream degradation. Every model simulates only a subset of the multiple interconnections between physical, chemical, and biological processes found in any watershed, and they all use a grossly simplified representation of the true spatial and temporal variability of a watershed. To speak of a “comprehensive watershed model” is thus an oxymoron, because the science of stormwater is not sufficiently far advanced to determine causality between all sources, resulting stressors, and their physical, chemical, and biological responses. Thus, it is not yet possible to create a protocol that mechanistically links stormwater dischargers to the quality of receiving waters. The utility of models with more modest goals, however, can still be high—as long as the questions being addressed by the model are in fact relevant and important to the functioning of the watershed to which that model is being applied, and sufficient data are available to calibrate the model for the processes
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Urban Stormwater Management in the United States included therein. EPA needs to ensure that the modeling and monitoring capabilities of the nation are continued and enhanced to avoid losing momentum in understanding and eliminating stormwater pollutant discharges. There is a need to extend, develop, and support current modeling capabilities, emphasizing (1) the impacts of flow energy, sediment transport, contaminated sediment, and acute and chronic toxicity on biological systems in receiving waterbodies; (2) more mechanistic representation (physical, chemical, biological) of SCMs; and (3) coupling between a set of functionally specific models to promote the linkage of source, transport and transformation, and receiving water impacts of stormwater discharges. Stormwater models have typically not incorporated interactions with groundwater and have treated infiltration and recharge of groundwater as a loss term with minimal consideration of groundwater contamination or transport to receiving waterbodies. Emerging distributed modeling paradigms that simulate interactions of surface and subsurface flowpaths provide promising tools that should be further developed and tested for applications in stormwater analysis. REFERENCES Adams, B., and F. Papa. 2000. Urban Stormwater Management Planning with Analytical Probabilistic Methods. New York: John Wiley and Sons. Alexander, R. B., R. A. Smith, and G. E. Schwarz. 2000. Effect of stream channel size on the delivery of nitrogen to the Gulf of Mexico. Nature 403:758–761. Alley, W. M. 1981. Estimation of impervious-area washoff parameters. Water Resources Research 17(4):1161–1166. Arnold, J. G., R. Srinivasan, R. S. Muttiah, and J. R. Williams. 1998. Large area hydrologic modeling and assessment Part I: Model development. Journal of the American Water Resources Association 34(1):73e89. Band, L. E., P. Patterson, R. R. Nemani, and S. W. Running. 1993. Forest ecosystem processes at the watershed scale: 2. Adding hillslope hydrology. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 63:93–126. Band, L. E., C. L. Tague, P. Groffman, and K. Belt. 2001. Forest ecosystem processes at the watershed scale: hydrological and ecological controls of nitrogen export. Hydrological Processes 15:2013–2028. Bannerman, R., K. M. Baun, P. E. Bohn, and D. A. Graczyk. 1983. Evaluation of Urban Nonpoint Source Pollution Management in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin. PB 84-114164. Chicago: EPA. Bannerman, R. T., D. W. Owens, R. B. Dodds, and N. J. Hornewer. 1993. Sources of pollutants in Wisconsin stormwater. Water Science and Technology 28(3–5):241–259. Batroney, T. 2008. The Implications of the First Flush Phenomenon on Infiltra-
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