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Purpose of 2013 Stormwater Management Rule and Guidebook

The 2013 SW Rule and SWMG are designed to accomplish the following:

  • Significantly reduce stormwater pollution flowing into the Anacostia and Potomac Rivers, Rock Creek, and other District waterbodies by making the land “spongier” and to better mimic how the vegetated natural environment captures rainwater and soaks it into the soil;
  • Improve the health of District waterbodies over time, making them more usable and attractive for District residents, businesses, and visitors;
  • Update the District’s existing requirements to reflect the current scientific, engineering, and practical understanding in the field and to be comparable to other urban jurisdictions, such as Philadelphia, PA and Montgomery County, MD;
  • Improve equity in how the burden of stormwater management is allocated in the District;
  • Provide flexible compliance options for regulated sites to maximize cost savings while still protecting District waterbodies;
  • Create a financial incentive and business opportunity for voluntary installation of stormwater retrofits to earn Stormwater Retention Credits that can be sold to regulated sites to meet part of their requirements; and
  • Allow the District to comply with federal requirements established in its stormwater permit, which is issued by the United States Environmental Protection Agency under the Clean Water Act.

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