UNH Stormwater Center
The UNH Stormwater Center is a dynamic research, testing and educational facility which serves as a technical resource for water managers, planners, and design engineers in New England and throughout the United States.
Under the Clean Water Act Phase II rules, the Environmental Protection Agency requires local governments to develop stormwater programs. In response, many organizations have or are now developing plans and actions to achieve desirable water quality and storm volume reduction. Although many of the stormwater management strategies are based on sound theory, there is no requirement that they undergo independent, third-party scientific testing. A three-year study of nine seacoast sites in New Hampshire clearly showed that traditional stormwater technologies failed in reducing at least one water quality parameter two-thirds of the time. The National Research Council recently noted that increasing urbanization has resulted in degradation of water quality and habitat in virtually every urban stream system. The report recommends, among other items, additional research on the relevant hydrologic and water quality processes within stormwater control measures.