Jeff Masters Weather Blog

What homeowners can do to reduce flooding in their communities » Yale Climate Connections

As the climate changes, many places are facing more intense rainfall. These downpours can overwhelm city stormwater systems and flood roads and homes.

Eban Bean of the University of Florida says to prevent floods, it’s important to reduce the amount of water rushing off roofs and roads and into storm drains.

He says homeowners can help by directing the downspouts from their gutters onto a lawn or garden.

“What happens, oftentimes, is people will put those downspouts and direct those onto their driveway,” Bean says. “And it creates this continuous conveyance of stormwater from the rooftop all the way to a stormwater pond or even to a water body downstream, where there’s not an opportunity for that water to even soak into the ground or be filtered in any way.”

Directing water onto the landscape instead allows it to spread out and soak into the ground.

And Bean says the same principle applies when building patios, sidewalks, and driveways.

“Try to look at using some pervious options – porous concrete or permeable pavers – that allow water to drain through, rather than just run off the surface and into the storm system,” he says.

So with a few simple changes, homeowners can do their part to help prevent flooding as the climate warms.

Read: Cities brace for more stormwater

Reporting credit: ChavoBart Digital Media

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