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Overview Description of
Watershed Management for the Rouge River

Background
The early focus of the Rouge Project was on the control of CSOs in the older urban core portion of the downstream areas of the Rouge Watershed. As a finite number of point source CSO discharges could be identified and responsibility for each defined, the traditional regulatory approach of issuing NPDES permits mandating corrective action worked relatively well. Additional monitoring of the river showed that the other sources of pollution such as industrial and municipal point sources, storm water runoff, discharges from illicit connections, discharges from failed on-site septic systems, and resuspension of contaminated sediment, needed to be controlled before full restoration of the river would be achieved throughout the watershed.

Based upon what was learned, the focus of the Rouge Project became more holistic to consider the impacts from all sources of pollution and use impairments in receiving waters. The historic implementation of water quality management programs in the United States at the federal and state levels has been to focus on point sources, which are the most obvious sources of pollution to waterbodies. This program has worked well to control pollution from most point sources but has also left a patchwork of regulated and unregulated discharges of storm water and nonpoint source pollution to surface waters. This patchwork is especially true in most urbanized areas where multiple local jurisdictions are located in the same watershed. The challenge for the Rouge Project became to develop innovative solutions to achieve water quality objectives that may be: 1) more cost-effective, 2) implemented in a more timely fashion and 3) better able meet local needs. It has also become clear that water resources management must have the support of the general public in order to be effective and to become self-sustaining. The Rouge Project has provided a unique opportunity for a watershed-wide approach to restoring and protecting an urban river system by using a cooperative, locally based approach to pollution control. The Project has learned that the use of the watershed approach has emerged as the most cost-effective and logical approach to water resource management. There is a clear interrelationship of the pollution sources within a watershed that demands an interrelated approach to a solution.. Volumes have been written on watershed approach and its strengths and weaknesses. That information will not be summarized here. Suffice it to say, use of the watershed approach has several major benefits.

Watershed Management and the Michigan NPDES General Permit
At the heart of the watershed management approach being used in the Rouge Watershed is the Michigan General Storm Water Permit. This voluntary permit established the process for developing watershed management plans to address the control of storm water and other sources of pollution. This permit evolved from what was being learned by the Rouge Project. In the mid 1990s, State water quality limits for bacteria and dissolved oxygen were regularly exceeded even in dry weather periods in the upper Rouge River watershed and highly variable flows caused flooding, exacerbated bank erosion and increased sedimentation that affected the lower river. Click here to learn more about stream flow issues in the Rouge Watershed. This information confirmed the suspicions of many that the discharges from separated storm systems in heavily urbanized areas can be significant sources of pollution including fecal coliform. Based upon the information that was being generated from the various programs underway, the focus of the Rouge Project shifted from a center of attention on controlling CSOs to becoming more holistic to consider the impacts from all sources of pollution and use impairments in receiving waters by using the watershed management approach.

One of the first efforts of the Rouge Project was an independent study of financial and institutional arrangements for funding and implementing water pollution controls in the Rouge River. Various institutional and financial arrangements throughout the United States were evaluated for their potential application to the problems and issues in the Rouge River watershed. Completed in July of 1994, the study concluded that an in-depth analysis of alternatives for watershed-wide storm water management needed to be completed before institutional mechanisms for water pollution control in the Rouge River basin could be finalized. (Study of Institutional and Financing Options. Apogee Research in consultation with Miller Canfield Paddock and Stone, Rouge Project Report. July 1994).

In March of 1995, a storm water management strategy based on the application of watershed-wide management approaches for the Rouge River was developed and implemented. The storm water strategy had six major elements

  • develop a baseline monitoring program
  • target investigations in identified problem areas
  • fund demonstration and pilot projects to remediate pollution sources and reduce flow variability
  • document institutional options and legal impediments to watershed-wide approaches
  • propose incentives to encourage voluntary participation by communities and other public agencies and,
  • adopt a plan for short term actions and iterative steps leading to comprehensive, watershed-wide storm water management.

In April of 1996, a supplemental report was published. It outlined the legal options under Michigan law that could be used to manage storm water based on hydrologic or watershed boundaries rather than by political boundaries (A Municipal Storm Water Discharge Regulation Strategy. Miller Canfield Paddock and Stone, Rouge Project Report. April 1996). The supplemental report concluded that using a General Permit or Permit by Rule concept to regulate municipal storm water on a watershed-wide or subwatershed approach would provide flexibility to the municipalities within the Rouge River watershed and support the creation of a locally managed storm water remediation control mechanism. Further, the report concluded that if the local agencies were agreeable to a voluntary mechanism to collectively remediate and control storm water discharges, current Michigan law offers a number of alternatives.

Three demonstration subwatersheds were selected to examine how a storm water management plan might differ between various areas within the watershed. The three subwatersheds selected represented

  • older, fully developed, suburban areas with both separated and combined sewers
  • rapidly developing areas in the headwaters of the Rouge River, with separated sewers and on-site septic systems and
  • an area that was still undergoing development, but was primarily urbanized

However before the strategy could be fully implemented, the federal District Court overseeing the cleanup of the Rouge River pushed the issue of the creation of an independent watershed-wide institutional structure to fund and manage water quality in the entire watershed. The communities, without exception, expressed grave reservations about establishing such an institutional arrangement.

The Wayne County and the Rouge watershed communities proposed an alternative regulatory framework through a watershed-based general storm water permit issued under the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES). The communities then asked the court for the opportunity to develop a draft permit acceptable to the communities as well as the state and federal regulatory agencies. The court agreed.

Beginning in 1995, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ), the Rouge Project and the communities in the Rouge Watershed jointly developed an innovative, watershed-based NPDES general permit ("General Permit") for municipal storm water discharges. For a more extensive discussion of the steps that lead to the development of this permit see "Adapting Regulatory Framework to Accommodate Watershed Approaches to Storm Water Management" by Robert Fredericks, et al. The General Permit was issued on July 31, 1997. The General Permit incorporates the following elements:

  • Coverage will be voluntary until the permits under the USEPA Phase II storm water are required (note that USEPA has endorsed Michigan's proposal to use the Voluntary General Storm Water Permit in lieu of permits that would otherwise be required by the Phase II regulations)
  • Only public agencies who own, operate, or control storm water are provided the opportunity for coverage;
  • Subwatershed size is established by the potential permittees during the application process;
  • Application and permit process have limited required actions, the focus is to establish desired outcomes.

The General Permit requires permittee to develop:

  • Watershed Management Plan developed in cooperation with others, to resolve water quality concerns. The Plan would include: short and long-term goals for the watershed, delineation of actions needed to achieve the goals, estimated benefits and costs of management options, an opportunity for all stakeholders to participate in the process. The Watershed Management Plan is due two years after the certificate of coverage is issued to the applicant.
  • Illicit Discharge Elimination Plan (IDEP) that has the goal of eliminating raw sewage discharges and includes addressing failing septic systems and improper connections of sanitary sewers to storm drains and open waterways. The IDEP is due at the time of permit application.
  • Public Education Plan (PEP) designed to inform residents and businesses what actions they should take to protect the river. The PEP is due at the time of permit application.
  • Storm Water Pollution Prevention Initiative (SWPPI) which includes evaluation and implementation of pollution prevention and good housekeeping practices and the evaluation and implementation of BMPs to minimize impacts of new development and redevelopment. The SWPPI is a subset of the Watershed Management Plan and is due 2.5 years after the certificate of coverage is issued to the applicant.
  • Monitoring and Reporting Plan including schedule for revisions to the Watershed Management Plan.

Communities and agencies in over 95 percent of the watershed have applied for coverage under this innovative, watershed-based permit program.

General Permit Guidance Documents
MDEQ developed four basic guidance documents for use by any community in applying for and then implementing the General Permit. Those documents are available by clicking on the following:

State of Michigan Guidance (Part I)
Subwatershed Management Plan Guidance (Part II)
Public Education/Information Plan Guidance (Part III)
Illicit Discharge Elimination Plan Guidance (Part IV)
Pollution Prevention Initiative Guidance (Part V)

The Rouge Project conducted three workshops in 1997 for the communities in the Watershed to assist them in complying with the requirements of the General Permit. Several guidance documents were prepared for use in those workshops. Those documents are available by clicking on the following:

General Storm Water Permit: Why Volunteer to be Regulated?
Community Project Guide to Managing Grants
Improving Community Storm Water Management: A Summary Guide of Ordinances

Several other guidance documents were prepared for the workshops. Those documents are listed below. These documents are now somewhat out of date because of the advances the communities have made in implementing the requirements of the General Permit. Copies of the guidance documents listed below can be obtained by contacting the Rouge Program Office.

Guidance for Preparing Management Plan
Guidance for Preparing a Public Education Plan
Criteria for Review of Public Education Plans
Setting the Stage (Public Education)
Existing Efforts/Opportunities for Addressing General Permit Requirements
Elimination Illicit Discharges
On-Site Sewage Disposal Systems
Financing Alternatives to Replace OSDA
On-Site Sewage Disposal System Management Flow Chart
Guidance for Preparing a Storm Water Pollution Prevention Initiative

Subwatershed Advisory Groups
Between January of 1996 and November of 1997, the Rouge Program Office (RPO) together with representatives from the Middle One Subwatershed communities and agencies convened in a series of meetings to produce the Middle One Subwatershed Management Study funded as a pilot study for the Rouge Project. Members of this cooperative group created this study to identify concerns about water quality and quantity within the Middle One subwatershed and develop ideas for management alternatives for the future. This management study was competed and the final report can be viewed at Middle 1 Subwatershed Management Study (NPS-TM23.00)

The cooperative group evolved over time because of a common interest in the MDEQ Voluntary General Storm Water Permit. With the goal of applying for this Voluntary Storm Water Permit, members of the original Middle One group reassembled in 1998 and extended invitations to all public agencies that were eligible for coverage under the MDEQ Permit. This group is now referred to as the Middle One Subwatershed Advisory Group (SWAG).

With its expanded membership, the Middle One SWAG began discussions on the requirements of the Permit, and by the middle of 1999, all the SWAG membership received Certificates of Coverage for the Permit. All of the Middle One SWAG communities and agencies are then began to implement their Storm Water Permits to restore and protect the Rouge River.

As stated earlier, three demonstration subwatersheds were selected to examine how a storm water management plan might differ between various areas within the watershed. In addition to the Middle 1 Subwatershed Management Study, a management study was completed for each of the other two demonstration subwatersheds. To view these other two documents see:

The Rouge River Watershed contains a total of seven subwatersheds that range in size between 19 and 89 square miles. Almost all of the Rouge communities worked together to develop the required subwatershed management plans. All of the subwatershed followed the pattern discussed above on the Middle 1 in the formation of the individual SWAGs for the various subwatersheds. There are now a total of seven SWAGS in the Rouge Watershed as follows:

Main 1-2 Subwatershed Advisory Group
Main 3-4 Subwatershed Advisory Group
Upper Subwatershed Advisory Group
Middle 1 Subwatershed Advisory Group
Middle 3 Subwatershed Advisory Group
Lower 1 Subwatershed Advisory Group
Lower 2 Subwatershed Advisory Group

The SWAGS developed their subwatershed management plans in accordance with the requirements of the General Permit and submitted them to MDEQ on May 31, 2001. The SWAGs worked collaboratively with the local units of government and County agencies that have Certificates of Coverage under the General Storm Water Permit to:

  • Develop and implement public participation plans,
  • Establish short-term and long-term goals for protecting and/or restoring the River,
  • Compile information on the nature and status of the subwatershed,
  • Identify and agree on actions to be taken to achieve the short-term and long-term goals, and
  • Assess management alternatives.

The subwatershed management plans are now being implemented by the communities and agencies.

Overcoming Institutional/Regulatory Barriers.
Local agencies and communities in urbanized areas have a long history of cooperative efforts to address the delivery of common public services. Recent trends in Michigan, and elsewhere in the country, to reduce the size and cost of government and limit local taxing power have accelerated efforts at the local level to integrate or share the cost of a broad range of government services. Local agencies are increasingly seeking ways with their neighboring jurisdictions to reduce the cost of police and fire protection, solid waste disposal, libraries, recreational facilities, infrastructure maintenance and repairs, public transit, water supplies, and sewage disposal. Unfortunately, except in a few isolated instances where a single authority has been created to oversee all aspects of water management, the legal responsibility for storm water is widely dispersed between local communities, county health and drain agencies, road agencies, private developers and autonomous school districts and public colleges. The creation of a new level of government in the form of a water management authority with broad powers has been resoundingly rejected in the Rouge River watershed by local agencies and is likely to receive the same reception in many other urban areas of the country.

State and federal water quality regulatory programs have traditionally focused on large point sources where responsibility for obtaining and complying with specific permit limits is easy to establish. The regulatory framework to control water pollution has generally discouraged rather than encouraged cooperative solutions among communities and has relied upon command and control to achieve results. The complexities involved in addressing wet weather pollution problems in urban areas and the widely dispersed accountability for managing storm water demands a new regulatory framework that will encourage cooperation among the locally responsible public agencies to design integrated, holistic solutions. The watershed approach to storm water regulation developed in Michigan offers an opportunity to overcome the institutional and regulatory impediments that have discouraged cooperative local approaches to restoring urban watersheds.

Institutional arrangements and financing options necessary to restore the Rouge are one of the many elements that the local communities in the Rouge Watershed are addressing in their working groups. The framework for institutional arrangements in the Rouge watershed is based on the Michigan General Storm Water Permit, and has evolved into a "bottom up" approach with 3 Levels of Activity:

  • Local
  • Subwatershed Advisory Groups
  • Watershed-wide Rouge Project Steering Committee

Citizens and individual communities are doing much of the work of the Rouge restoration effort at the local level. This flexible framework has allowed communities to experiment with various approaches that recognize local constraints and seizes upon unique opportunities to meet the desired outcomes defined in the subwatershed management plan.

As part of the subwatershed planning process, communities and agencies are also identifying and implementing more cost effective and efficient methods to meet the requirements of the General Storm Water Permit and other programs through cooperatively developed projects. Evaluating the sources of water quality problems and/or the threats to existing uses of the river at the subwatershed level by local agencies is leading to a better understanding of local constraints, opportunities for innovative solutions, ownership of the long term river restoration effort and interagency cooperation.

Rouge Project Steering Committee
Issues which cross subwatershed boundaries are identified by the Subwatershed Advisory Groups and referred to those coordinating watershed-wide issues. The Rouge Project Steering Committee is currently providing coordination of the individual subwatershed efforts and is assisting subwatersheds in developing a comprehensive strategy for addressing watershed-wide issues. See the following documents for information on the Steering Committee: Rouge Watershed Steering Committee Summary; Rouge Project Steering Committee Purposes; Membership and Operating Procedures; and Rouge Project Steering Committee Membership List. Minutes from the Steering Committee are available by clicking here.

The subwatershed communities are also identifying those activities such as public education and water quality monitoring which may be most cost-effectively performed throughout the entire watershed by a single entity. Other agencies provide watershed-wide support, including the Rouge RAP Advisory Council and the well-established non-profit Friends of the Rouge organization.

Evolving Institutional Arrangements
A major item of focus in 2001 was discussion on the direction of the Rouge River restoration for 2002 and 2003. A planning retreat for communities with NPDES permits in the Rouge watershed was held on October 4, 2001 to explore options associated with institutional arrangements for the Rouge Watershed. Representatives from approximately 35 communities attended this all-day retreat to discuss Rouge Project activities and processes for the next several years. The principle conclusion was that a new watershed-wide organization was needed to further the continued efforts in the Rouge River restoration. It was decided that a new "Drafting Committee" would be established to work in parallel with the Steering Committee for a period of time to develop recommendations on a number of issues including the following:

  • Planning for water quality and water quantity issues in the watershed;
  • Establishing priorities for projects that relate to goals, targets and schedules;
  • Providing advocacy for the members at the federal/state/regional and local level;
  • Coordinating the activities and management plans for the Subwatershed Advisory Groups;
  • Coordinating and perhaps managing watershed-wide sampling/monitoring; and
  • Addressing regional concerns including providing a forum for coordination of issues with the Detroit Water and Sewer Department.

In May 2002 the Drafting Committee completed a Draft Agreement for the Rouge River Watershed Local Management Assembly and presented it to the communities at the Rouge Retreat 2. Click here to view the Executive Summary Proposed Rouge River Watershed Local Management Assembly. The Drafting Committee solicited comments from affected communities and agencies through August 1, 2002. On September 11, 2002 the Drafting Committee issued its final draft document saying that "It is the Drafting Committee's considered opinion that the September 11, 2002 Draft Agreement provides the best opportunity to initiate a watershed organization that can enhance communication and build trust among local agencies responsible for water management in the Rouge River Watershed." Click here to view the Draft Agreement. Click here to view the transmittal letter to the communities from James D. Anulewicz, Chair, Rouge River Watershed Drafting Committee which summarizes the proposed schedule of events for implementing the agreement. A December 6, 2002 Workshop will be held to finalize the Agreement and its implementation schedule.

View the Assembly of Rouge Communities Web page.

Achieving Multiple Objectives through a Single Watershed Management Plan
The subwatershed management plans form the basis for implementing watershed goals and objectives that will result in improved water quality and pollution control. The Rouge communities will also use these watershed management plans to achieve other program objectives, such as those under the federal TMDL program, the state Clean Michigan Initiative, the water quality trading program and others as appropriate.

As discussed above, the Rouge communities have developed the required subwatershed management plans. While the basic requirements for what must be in a watershed plan for the Rouge Watershed are detailed in the General Permit, the permittees within a hydrologic or subwatershed unit are allowed considerable freedom in deciding upon their own priorities, remedial actions and schedules.

The State of Michigan has incorporated watershed planning components into a number of water resource management programs. Four such programs are summarized below.

  • TMDL Program: Various segments of the Rouge River are listed on the federal Clean Water Act Section 303(d) list for various parameters. The Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) for these segments are not scheduled for completion until approximately 2005. The river will require multiple TMDLs that may result in conflicting implementation strategies in the watershed as a whole. Under the USEPA's TMDL regulations use of the watershed approach is encouraged, an approach already being implemented in the Rouge Project.
  • Storm Water General Permit: Almost all of the communities within the Rouge River Watershed have obtained their Certificates of Coverage (CoC) under Michigan's NPDES General Permit for municipal storm water discharges. One requirement of the storm water General Permit is for each CoC holder to participate in the development of a long-term, comprehensive watershed management plan for a self-determined hydrologic unit. Among other programmatic elements, this plan must identify specific activities each community or agency will undertake during the first permit term toward meeting the goals of the watershed management plan.
  • Clean Michigan Initiative: In July 1998, the State of Michigan passed and began implementing its Clean Michigan Initiative (CMI), a $675 million general obligation bond dedicated to fund projects for "Clean Water, Clean Parks, and Clean Communities." Funding awards under two categories of grants, the Nonpoint Source Pollution Control Grants and the Clean Water Fund, are based on an "approved" watershed management plan.
  • Water Quality Trading Program: The State of Michigan is in the process of completing its Water Quality Trading Program rules. Through this program, the trading of nutrients in impaired water bodies (for which TMDLs have not yet been developed) can only occur where an approved watershed management plan has been developed. Unlike other "approvable" watershed plans, the watershed management plan for the trading program must include a "cap" and allocations. Click here to learn more about the state's water quality trading program.

As described above, the seven subwatershed advisory groups in the Rouge Watershed have developed subwatershed management plans as required under the Michigan storm water General Permit. Obviously it is desirable to develop only one "comprehensive watershed management plan" that will meet stakeholder goals and objectives as well as all applicable program requirements for the above listed four programs and any other programs that emerge. Therefore, the Rouge Project subwatershed management plans have a goal of being comprehensive watershed management plans that will meet objectives of multiple programs. By doing so, both the watershed communities and regulatory agencies will save time, money and effort by having one plan that fulfills multiple objectives. In addition, these comprehensive plans will provide much needed certainty to the communities, counties and other stakeholders in planning for watershed management activities and expenditures.

Summary of Rouge Project Accomplishments To Date
The Rouge Project is designed to identify the most efficient and cost effective controls of wet weather pollution, while assuring maximum use of the resource. A great deal has been accomplished along these lines. The following summarizes some of those accomplishments.

The CSO control program has made major advances. For a summary of those, see Overview Description of the CSO Control Program.

Innovative storm water control and watershed management technologies are also being evaluated under the Rouge Project. Twenty-five (25) different communities and agencies throughout the watershed are implementing over 100 pilot projects. Categories of pilot management projects currently underway include wetlands creation and restoration, structural storm water practices such as grassed swales and detention ponds, erosion controls, streambank stabilization and habitat restoration, to name a few.

The Rouge Project has learned that illicit connections and failing septic systems are major sources of pollution problems in the Detroit urban area. Creative ways to deal with these sources of pollution have been initiated.

USEPA's Office of Inspector General Report on CSO Control
During the latter part of 2001, USEPA's Office of Inspector General (OIG) conducted a nationwide audit of the national CSO control program. They interviewed EPA headquarters personnel, three EPA Regions, eight states, 22 communities and some others. The MDEQ, the Rouge Project and several Michigan cities were interviewed as part of the study. The OIG issued their final Evaluation Report on "Wastewater Management - Controlling and Abating Combined Sewer Overflows" in August 2002.

The report cites a number of examples of the successes of the Rouge Project's CSO control program. The following is a quote from the report about the program and the watershed approach being utilized:

"Rouge River Project a Blueprint for Success
The Rouge River National Wet Weather Demonstration in Michigan is an excellent
example of how utilizing a watershed approach can help to achieve water quality
goals more efficiently. We have previously described in this report some of the successful results that have been achieved by this project."

Environmental Results To Date
The Long-Term Monitoring Network of the Rouge Project includes continuous measurement of Rouge River dissolved oxygen (DO) content at five key locations. Adequate dissolved oxygen content is one key element of a healthy river ecosystem. The DO measurements are made from mid-April through mid-November each year, and most sites have been monitored since 1994. Since the measurements are continuous, they show the combined effect of dry and wet weather conditions in the river. A review of the preliminary 2001 data from these long-term monitoring locations is summarized below.

The water quality in the Rouge River continued to show the very encouraging trend of continuous improvement because of these efforts and others. The MDEQ water quality standard for DO is 5 mg/l. The mean DO in the lower reaches of the Rouge River has increased from 4.5 mg/l in 1994 to almost 7.0 mg/l in 2001. The percent of DO readings that violated the DO standard of 5 mg/l dropped from 61 percent in 1994 to less than 4 percent in 2001. Similar improvements occurred at all stations in the watershed where those stations met the standard 100% of the time. The water quality improvements that are occurring clearly reflect the benefits of the watershed management strategies that have been implemented to address and control both dry and wet weather pollution sources in the watershed.

Because of these efforts and others, the water quality in the Rouge River continues to show significant improvement. For example, during the year 2000 at the lower end of the River the mean dissolved oxygen (DO) increased from 4.5 mg/l in 1994 to almost 7.0 mg/l in 2000. The percent of DO readings that violated the State water quality standard of 5 mg/l dropped from 61 percent in 1994 to less than 4 percent in 2000. Similar improvements occurred at all stations in the watershed where those stations met the standard 100% of the time. It is important to note that these figures are for the entire year, during both wet and dry periods. The water quality has not been at these levels in decades.

Coupled with the water quality improvements, the ecosystem health continues to improve as well. This improvement is demonstrated by the results of the 4th Annual Friends of the Rouge Frog and Toad Survey. Over 400 volunteers listened for the mating calls of nine different species of frogs and toads in the areas of Wayne, Oakland and Washtenaw Counties within the Rouge River Watershed. They heard a greater number of green frogs and northern leopard frogs during the 2001 survey than they did in the previous year.

Another indicator that the ecosystem health of the Rouge River is improving is by the presence of insects and other invertebrates. Friends of the Rouge Bug Hunt Days are an opportunity to see the amazing variety of aquatic insects, crayfish, snails and clams that make up the bottom of the river food chain. Twice a year, teams of volunteers visit sites throughout the headwaters of the watershed and search for mayflies, stoneflies and other aquatic invertebrates. The presence or absence of these streambed creatures reflects the quality of the water and habitat. May 2002 Spring Bug Hunt Results

Conclusions
The Rouge Project is a working demonstration of a watershed-wide approach to restoring and protecting an urban river system by using a cooperative, locally based approach to pollution control. The watershed management tools developed by the Rouge Project has aided decision-makers and the general public in evaluating options for preventing, reducing and minimizing pollution loading impacts on the Rouge River. The Rouge watershed management tools facilitate the prioritization and tailoring of pollution control and ecosystem restoration solutions to specific river reaches while coordinating efforts throughout the watershed.

The Rouge Project approach demonstrates that a watershed can be "managed." When water quality objectives can only be reached through the control of CSO, storm water and non-point sources-then watershed management must involve the active participation of local units of government.

Project staff feels an overwhelming success with the project. The improvements in water quality are outstanding, and the demonstration techniques have resulted not only in concrete and steel structures, but also in real institutional changes that integrate the work of storm water and watershed improvement into the basic institutions of government.


Last Updated: 11/4/02

Please address all comments and suggestions about the contents of this Web page to DOEHelp@co.wayne.mi.us.

The Rouge River National Wet Weather Demonstration Project is funded, in part, by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Grants #XP995743-01, -02, -03, -04, -05, -06, -07, -08, -09 and C-264000-01.