Learn how to lessen the impact of stormwater runoff on water quality and coastal habitats during a two-day workshop presented by UGA Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant.

The workshop, Jan. 19-20, will be held at the UGA Marine Education Center and Aquarium on Skidaway Island in Savannah.

Participants will learn about the impacts of stormwater runoff through demonstrations and hands-on exercises that encourage the use of green infrastructure, such as native plants and soils.

Green infrastructure and low impact development are management practices that naturally filter and store stormwater runoff, reducing the amount of waste entering local waterways.

“Stormwater is best managed at its source and there are numerous opportunities for communities and residents to do their part in protecting our ecosystems from stormwater pollution,” says Jessica Brown, stormwater specialist for Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant.

Brown will lead activities that encourage participants to think critically about impacts of runoff in coastal Georgia by discussing the types of pollutants entering Georgia’s waterways and the paths they take to get there.

“A lot of people don’t realize that neighborhood storm drains flow directly into tidal creeks and marshes,” says Brown.

Participants will have the opportunity to design a stormwater management system for a neighborhood or residence using different control measures, such as a rain garden or permeable pavement. As part of the exercise, they will calculate the amount of potential runoff at the property, determine the size and shape of the low impact development practice they want to apply, select vegetation and produce a maintenance plan.

“Our goal is participants will leave the workshop with enough information and skills to start considering solutions they could implement at home or in their community,” says Brown.

This workshop is offered as part of UGA Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant’s coastal stewards program, a series of environmental workshops designed to engage adults in activities that improve their knowledge of coastal ecosystems, enhance understanding of issues impacting coastal communities, and inspire stewardship of natural resources. Each workshop contains a mixture of lecture, lab and field activities using scientific and recreational equipment.

Cost of the workshop is $100 and includes dinner Friday night and lunch on Saturday. Registration is required. Contact Kayla Clark at 912-598-3345 or kayla270@uga.edu. More information is available here http://gacoast.uga.edu/events