FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
MDE hosts 4th annual Smart, Green & Growing Clean Water Innovations Trade Show
Trade show featured learning sessions and examples of best practices in stormwater management
BALTIMORE, MD (October 21, 2014) – The Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) today hosted the fourth annual Smart, Green & Growing Clean Water Innovations Trade Show. The event brought businesses, local governments, developers and other stakeholders together to find cost-effective, innovative and efficient ways to reduce polluted stormwater runoff and improve water quality in both local waterways and the Chesapeake Bay.
Two-hundred registrants visited with 40 vendors exhibiting their innovative products and services for environmentally sensitive site design and restoration of wetlands, streams and other ecosystems. MDE also offered learning sessions for registered attendees presented by Adam Ortiz, Director of the Prince George’s County Department of the Environment, Sarah Lane of the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science and Dana Havlik and Christie Minami of Maryland State Highway Administration.
The one-day event also marked the beginning of MDE’s second Stormwater Innovations Roadshow, a campaign to highlight public projects underway around Maryland to reduce stormwater pollution.
The Trade Show was an initiative developed at a 2011 “Maryland Forward” forum on sustainability. It was inspired by the suggestion of Governor Martin O’Malley to bring together Maryland businesses with developers and local governments to work on cost-effective solutions to reduce stormwater runoff pollution and other water quality issues.
Urban and suburban stormwater pollution accounts for about 20 percent of the nutrient pollution into our rivers, streams, lakes and drinking water reservoirs and entering the Chesapeake Bay.
Under the federal Clean Water Act, the State and federal governments work together with local jurisdictions to curb this large polluting sector by setting targets for stormwater pollution reduction that the jurisdictions must reach.
During the 2012 Maryland General Assembly session, lawmakers passed House Bill 987 to give local jurisdictions the flexibility needed to set fees that would work for each jurisdiction and a way to fund the pollution reduction projects needed to meet the goals set under the Clean Water Act.
Maryland is 41 percent of the way toward meeting its 2025 federal pollution limits requirement for nitrogen and 62 percent of the way toward meeting its requirement for reducing phosphorus.
Most jurisdictions have discounts and rebates to stormwater fees available for those businesses and residents that have taken steps to reduce stormwater runoff on their properties.
“Under the leadership of Governor O’Malley and Lieutenant Governor Brown, Maryland continues to make great strides in improving the quality of our groundwater, streams, rivers, and Chesapeake Bay, but there is still more that needs to be done. Local governments, communities and non-profit organizations are working together to address stormwater in Maryland because it is a major source of pollution to our fresh water supplies. We all are able to enjoy a clean environment, improved health and quality of life when the public and private sectors work with one another to encourage innovation and protect our natural resources. This event is an important opportunity for Maryland’s water quality experts to come together to share their ideas and develop innovative approaches.”
– Robert M. Summers, Secretary, Maryland Department of the Environment
Clean Water Innovation Trade Show Exhibitors
MDE’s Stormwater 101
Smart, Green & Growing
Maryland’s Stormwater Management Program
Visit MDE’s Flickr page for images from today’s event
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