Project Description

Rain garden at Young Middle Magnet School in Tampa, Florida. (photo courtesy of Ryan Locicero)

Rain garden at Young Middle Magnet School in Tampa, Florida. (photo courtesy of Ryan Locicero)

The University of South Florida department of Civil and Environmental Engineering in partnership with the University of Texas Resources for the Future, Yale University, University of Florida, University of Maryland, and Corporation to Develop Communities of Tampa have been awarded a competitive grant by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as part of its Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program to establish a Center for Reinventing Aging Infrastructure for Nutrient Management (RAINmgt). As a national research center RAINmgt will tackle a dire issue plaguing our nation’s waterways that is critical to Florida’s and the Nation’s economic and social well being: nutrient inputs such as nitrogen and phosphorus from domestic wastewater and stormwater. The National Academy of Engineering has identified managing the nitrogen cycle and restoring and improving urban infrastructure as two of their Grand Challenges.

Rain garden2

Rain garden constructed at the CDC in Tampa, Fl. (Photo courtesy of Emma Lopez)

RAINmgt will assist efforts to manage and control nutrients in a more sustainable and innovative manner. RAINmgt will accomplish this through integrated research involving engineers, economists, soil scientists, ecologists and other experts. It will use a system view by considering social and economic factors affecting adoption of new technologies. Our work will also emphasize pollution prevention by preferring source reduction and reuse options over treatment and disposal.

The mission of RAINmgt is to achieve sustainable and healthy communities in a cost-effective manner by re-thinking aging coastal urban infrastructure systems for nutrient recovery and management. The overall goal of RAINmgt is to manage the nutrients in our urban coastal watersheds by fostering fresh ideas to solving the problems and inviting the community, policy makers, regulators, design engineers, and regulated entities in a joint effort.

 

A message to general public: Are you interested in learning more about how you can help locally with nutrient management? Visit the U.S. EPA’s Nutrient Pollution website by clicking the image below.

EPA nutrient pollution