Sharing Knowledge at the Urban Green Infrastructure Summit in Portland, Oregon
The Rutgers Cooperative Extension (RCE) Water Resources Program's Christopher C. Obropta and Rosana Da Silva were invited to deliver the keynote address at the Urban Green Infrastructure Summit in Portland, OR. The goal of the summit was to create new collaborative networks, identify research and education priorities, and share existing resources.
Chris and Rosana tag teamed the keynote address and presented the Rutgers Cooperative Extension Water Resources Program’s Community-Based Green Infrastructure Initiative. The presentation was well received by the audience of over 70 participants engaged in working on green infrastructure planning and implementation throughout the state of Oregon and Washington.
The Pacific Northwest is highly committed to in using green infrastructure to address combined sewer overflow, localized flooding, and water quality problems. Portland, OR has over 2,000 green streets which include rain gardens and bioswales that are plentiful throughout the region. Yet the people at the summit are still struggling to better understand how to make green infrastructure more effective, reduce maintenance costs, and encourage a broader range of adoption. We can learn much from the experiences of the green infrastructure professionals in Oregon and Washington, and we can provide them with strong examples of how to engage communities particularly through developing municipal action teams and using rapid planning tools like the impervious cover assessment, reduction action plan, and green infrastructure feasibility study.