Watersheds are drainage areas that capture stormwater and snowmelt flows into a waterbody, such as a river, lake, estuary, or reservoir. These waterbodies supply drinking water to area residents, provide recreation and respite, and sustain natural ecology, providing habitat for birds, fish, and other wildlife.
Protecting these valuable resources requires a holistic, “watershed approach,” providing the most effective framework to reduce pollution effects, control flooding, restore ecosystems, and enhance the quality of water supplies. In implementing a watershed approach, the focus is on making sound infrastructure and growth decisions that are in harmony with the way in which water flows through a watershed. Watershed planning incorporates present and future aesthetic, ecological, community growth, and health concerns into planning efforts.
Hazen and Sawyer has extensive experience in watershed planning and stormwater management. Our analyses enable key decision makers to consider the most cost-effective, natural resource-based alternatives alongside the traditional treatment technology investments. We design stormwater management solutions that perform effectively in concert with the natural environment, preserving in sensitive watersheds and providing a surface water management plan that addresses both current conditions and evolving needs.
Effective watershed management includes:
- Controlling water flows through urban and suburban neighborhoods and agricultural areas – including aquifers, streams, rivers, lakes, and estuaries.
- Addressing the highest priority problems within hydrologically-defined geographic areas, taking into consideration both ground and surface water flow.
- Going beyond traditional geographic boundaries to create interstate and inter-local partnerships.
In implementing effective watershed management, we can help our clients reduce the impacts of nonpoint sources of pollution on water resources; regulate activities for soil conservation; protect waterways and wetlands; form local and regional partnerships to restore and protect water resources, including drinking water sources; and educate citizens about watersheds and the effect of development activities within these sensitive areas, eliciting their support for and participation in enforcing watershed controls .
Hazen and Sawyer has provided hundreds of clients with innovative and sustainable watershed management solutions, safeguarding water supplies, restoring rural, suburban and urban environments, and improving the overall quality of life.