Summer greetings and news updates

Summer greetings and news updates

Photo credit: Windfall Ecology Centre. The rain garden at their head office in Aurora is looking lush after a couple years of growth and an expansion of the area!

We don’t have a blog post for you this month, but stay tuned in the coming issues of The Umbrella for more on our project to bring stakeholders together to address urban flooding in Ontario, as well as case studies of exciting green infrastructure projects in London, Ajax, Peterborough, Thunder Bay, Kingston and Kitchener. 

Have you got a project, case study, or issue that we should feature in the Umbrella? Let me know!  We also love to share photos of thriving projects so please send them along. 

Enjoy the rest of the summer, and I hope you find the news and resources below useful. 

Clara Blakelock, Editor of the Umbrella


How to successfully catalyze green infrastructure on private property. Key recommendations to the New York City Department of Environment include ensuring fair and sustainable funding for stormwater (stormwater user fees), committing to green infrastructure on private property as a key component of stormwater services, providing grants for installation along with ongoing credits and partnering with nonprofits and community-based organizations.  

Provide comments on Lake Huron LAMP. The Lakewide Action Management Plan has been released for public comment. The plan contains multiple references to the impacts of stormwater runoff on the water quality of the lake, including microplastics, bacteria, and nutrients. Respond by September 5th. 

Update your curves. new version of an online tool from the University of Western Ontario for developing intensity-duration-frequency curves under climate change is now available. This tool can be used to better plan for the impacts of climate change on stormwater infrastructure.

P is down but salt is up in Lake Simcoe.  According to the 2016 Minister’s Annual report on Lake Simcoe, average phosphorus levels are decreasing but salt levels are steadily climbing.  Since 2000, salt levels at multiple sampling sites have climbed from around 30mg/l to around 50 mg/l. The Lake Simcoe and Region Conservation Authority has produced a guide for reducing salt use in parking lots.  

How climate change will impact water quality.  While increased flooding is often identified as a major impact of climate change, a new study predicts that algae blooms are also expected to get worse. Increased runoff will carry more nutrients to water bodies, and warmer temperatures will create more attractive environments for algal growth. 

Value your natural assets.  new tool helps governments with the financial valuation of sustainable infrastructure. 


Green Parks.  Park People on how cities should include green stormwater infrastructure in parks to adapt to climate change. 

Surface materials around trees in hard landscapes.  A guide for maintaining healthy trees in urban environments from the London Tree Officers Association. 

Community-driven climate resilience planning.  A guide for ensuring that those most vulnerable to climate impacts are involved in adaptation planning. Produced by the U.S. National Association of Climate Resilience Planners.  

Ecosystem services from green infrastructure.  A research briefing from the U.K. parliament on urban green infrastructure ecosystem services. 

Jobs at Ontario Climate Consortium.  Apply by September 8th for a research analyst position or September 22nd for communications and engagement coordinator


LID Technical Training – Design of infiltration practices. Oshawa, 21 September 2017. Hosted by Sustainable Technologies Evaluation Programme, led by Chris Denich, Jen Hill and Dean Young. Early bird pricing of $175 until September 8. Register here.

LID treatment train tool workshop. Vaughan on 29 September, Mississauga on 17 November. Walk through the capabilities of the tool (beta version available here). Register here.

Green infrastructure champions workshop. 5 October, London. Hosted by Great Lakes Commission Green Infrastructure Champions Network. Contact Vanni Azzanno for more information or to register.