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US Cities could be capturing billions of gallons of rain a day

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on Wired or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: Urban areas across the United States are making strides in managing stormwater runoff, which amounts to an estimated 59.5 million acre-feet per year
• This shift towards smarter infrastructure and "sponge city" designs, including green spaces, is crucial for sustainability amidst worsening droughts and intensified storms due to climate change

🔭 The context: Traditional urban planning has treated stormwater as a nuisance, leading to its diversion away from cities 
• However, this approach is increasingly unsustainable with the changing climate 
• Innovative solutions like green spaces and permeable surfaces are being adopted to capture and utilize stormwater, reducing the reliance on municipal and industrial water supplies

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: Efficient stormwater management is essential for mitigating the effects of climate change on urban water cycles 
• By embracing stormwater as a resource rather than a waste, cities can become more resilient to extreme weather events, reduce flooding, and support ecosystems

⏭️ What's next: The trend towards integrating stormwater capture into urban planning is expected to accelerate as the impacts of climate change become more pronounced
• Cities are encouraged to continue adopting and expanding green infrastructure to manage stormwater effectively and sustainably

💬 One quote: "There really is no reason why stormwater capture shouldn’t be up there on the list of water sources for all communities in the country that are looking to secure their long-term supplies," said Bruk Berhanu, senior researcher at the Pacific Institute

📈 One stat: Urban areas in the U.S. generate an equivalent of 93% of total municipal and industrial water use in stormwater runoff annually, highlighting the potential for capturing this resource.

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