TAMPA, FLA. — With the 2012 hurricane season in full swing, the minds of many are concerned about potential impacts of stormwater on the urban environment. To that end, the Water Environment Federation (WEF) and the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) in June published the new "Manual of Practice (MOP) on Design of Urban Stormwater Controls," a 750-page engineering reference.

The new resource was created by a team of 16 authors representing academia, consulting companies, and government agencies. Dan Medina, Ph.D., P.E., D.WRE, associate vice president of Atkins’ water and environment practice, served as co-editor with Christine Pomeroy, Ph.D., P.E., who serves as assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. Medina and Pomeroy also worked with a task force of about 100 stormwater professionals who served as peer reviewers.

The new MOP is a thorough revision to "Urban Runoff Quality Management," an engineering MOP jointly published in 1998 by WEF and ASCE. According to Medina, a recent “paradigm shift” in the way stormwater is viewed and managed was what drove the creation of an updated stormwater MOP.

“Traditionally, stormwater has been viewed a nuisance — something to quickly dispose of and route to central detention facilities,” he said. “But many are coming to see stormwater as a resource that should be used beneficially and then returned to its natural environment. This approach is a key factor in today’s ‘green’ infrastructure movement, and the new MOP leads the way in fostering a convergence between low-impact development principles and traditional stormwater management strategies.”

To introduce the content of the newly revised MOP to engineers, planners, architects, regulators, and other concerned professionals, WEF created a series of three, 90-minute webcasts. The first two webcasts were held in June and July; the third webcast is scheduled for Aug. 9, 2012. More information about the webcasts is available at www.wef.org/Conferences/page_webcasts_details.aspx?id=6442452284.