What is Environmental Planning?
Environmental planning sits at the junction of traditional land use planning and zoning and the natural environment. The primary goal of environmental planning is to work toward achieving economic and ecological sustainability through by appropriately balancing the interests of numerous stakeholders with competing interests. The main objective of environmental planning is to provide stakeholders and decision-makers with information to enable better environmental principles to be incorporated at the earliest possible stage in the planning process.
What can DCPD provide?
Department staff provide environmental planning expertise to and seek innovative solutions for residents, businesses, municipalities and other environmental stakeholders in the following areas:
- Stormwater Analysis, Infrastructure Assessment & Permit Compliance
- Stream Corridor Management
- Onsite & Community Wastewater
- Sourcewater Protection
- Highway Management Planning
- State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) compliance
- Watershed Technical Assistance
- Hazard Mitigation & Floodplain Analysis
- Open Space & Recreational Planning
- Green Development – Encouraging low impact development techniques, green building design and LEED certification, and conservation subdivision practices
All basins in the New York City Watershed must establish a stormwater pollution prevention plan. Stormwater pollution prevention plans must be prepared and implemented according to the requirements of the DEC SPDES. A significant source of water quality impairment is urban stormwater runoff. Stormwater discharges are generated by runoff from land and impervious surfaces such as paved streets, parking lots, and building rooftops during rainfall and snowmelt events. This runoff accumulates pollutants such as petroleum hydrocarbons, pesticides, nutrients, metals and pathogens as it travels across the land in quantities that can adversely affect water quality.
To address stormwater runoff in Delaware County, the Planning Department, working in conjunction with the DPW has developed the following long-term management programs.
1. Inventory, Assessment and Evaluation of Stormwater Sources and infrastructure.
The goal is to identify all point and nonpoint sources of stormwater in the village and hamlet areas that may pose a threat to water quality and manage them to reduce their impact on water quality. To this end, the Department will locate and assess existing stormwater infrastructure, develop, implement and monitor stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs); and evaluate problem areas and recommend solutions.
2. Local Implementation and Municipal Plan Development.
This task entails working each municipality, under the auspices of the Town Planning Advisory Service (TPAS), to develop local initiative regarding water quality protection through stormwater management and to demonstrate the role of water quality in relation to community economic development. Each municipal strategy will analyze and incorporate previous work to develop a prioritized plan to meet current and future needs for repair, expansion and management of local stormwater infrastructure. Maintenance programs will also be developed to continually assess the condition of the stormwater system, to track sediment by volume and type removed, and to reduce the likelihood of flooding due to clogged collection and conveyance systems.