Globally, urban population growth and land development are placing unprecedented demands on stormwater infrastructure, leading to increased flooding . This challenge is exacerbated by climate change, which is predicted to increase rainfall frequency and intensity. While the consequences of catastrophic flooding are more conspicuous, chronic stormwater-related flooding is sometimes less apparent but also insidious. It can result in economic losses, degrade ecosystems, and affect human productivity, health, and psychosocial wellbeing . As such, there is an urgent need to work collaboratively with vulnerable communities to identify localized, sustainable flood management strategies, in keeping with The Nature Conservancy’s (TNC’s) urban conservation principle of community engagement (CE) . One innovative set of stormwater management strategies is natural or green infrastructure (GI). GI ranges from small-scale installations, such as rain gardens and green roofs, to preservation of large natural areas. GI is especially important in cities with large amounts of impervious surfaces and aging combined sewer systems, such as Chicago. Here, rainfall of ≥2.5 inches in 24 hours has been associated with flooding, and the frequency of such events is projected to increase considerably . However, advancing large-scale GI networks will require partnerships with communities who stand to benefit the most from flood prevention and co-benefits of improved health and wellbeing. Given the limited evidence on socio-economic and health impacts of GI, there is an urgent need for in-depth, local, community-based research on this subject.
|Effective start/end date||7/1/19 → 8/31/21|
- Nature Conservancy (Project No: P105251)
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