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EPA launches Campus RainWorks Challenge 2014

July 29, 2014
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College students across the United States are being challenged to develop innovative approaches to managing stormwater.

The third annual Campus RainWorks Challenge, launched by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) last week, invites college and university students to come up with new ideas for green infrastructure systems that could reduce stormwater pollution.

Without effective stormwater management, large volumes of stormwater can pollute streams, rivers and lakes. This poses a threat to human health and the environment and also contributes to downstream flooding. The burden on local water infrastructure can be minimized through the deployment of green infrastructure, which treats rain where it falls and keeps polluted stormwater out of sewer systems and local waterways.

Teams of undergraduate and graduate students that take part in Campus RainWorks will collaborate with a faculty advisor to develop a proposed green infrastructure project for their campus. The proposal is expected to demonstrate how managing stormwater at its source can benefit the community and the environment.

In addition to encouraging the use of green infrastructure on college and university campuses, the Campus RainWorks Challenge helps train the next generation of stormwater professionals and develops new knowledge on the performance of green infrastructure, the EPA said.

Participants can register for this year's Challenge from September 2 through October 3. The deadline for submission of entries is December 19.

Each winning team will share $1,000-$2,000 between the student team members and will receive a faculty prize of $2,000-$3,000 to support green infrastructure research or training. Winning entries will be announced by the EPA in April 2015.

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