A Division of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources

Georgia EPD - Coastal Stormwater Supplement to the Stormwater Management Manual

 Introductory Letter from Director Carol Couch for the Coastal Stormwater Supplement

As growth and development projections show approximately a 50% increase in Georgia's Coastal Population in less than 25 years, it becomes increasingly important to address the impacts of this growth to sensitive water resources, habitats and wildlife. The Coastal Stormwater Supplement to the Georgia Stormwater Management Manual provides Georgia’s coastal communities with comprehensive guidance on an integrated, green infrastructure-based approach to natural resource protection, stormwater management and site design that can be used to better protect coastal Georgia’s unique and vital natural resources from the negative impacts of land development and nonpoint source pollution. In step with the national trend, the focus of the Supplement shifts post-construction stormwater management efforts to the prevention of stormwater runoff.

Project Background:

Beginning in 2006, the Environmental Protection Division (EPD) of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, in conjunction with multiple sister agencies and organizations identified the need to broadly address stormwater management specifically in the coastal region of Georgia. This was, in part, driven by ongoing dialogues in multiple coastal issue stakeholder groups about the resulting resource degradation due to stormwater runoff. Additionally, Georgia, along with other states with approved Coastal Management Programs, is required to implement best management practices to protect coastal resources from nonpoint source pollution.

A multi-faceted grant project was designed and carried out by EPD, the Center for Watershed Protection, the Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Planning Commission, the local governments included in a 24 county coastal plain region as well as many private companies and organizations.

Products produced include:

  • Coastal Stormwater Supplement to the Georgia Stormwater Management Manual
  • Corresponding excel spreadsheet to ensure a project's consistency with the Coastal Supplement
  • Coastal Model Stormwater Ordinance
  • Stormwater Utility Manual for local governments
  • Stormwater Monitoring BMP Protocol

Coastal Stormwater Supplement

The purpose of this CSS is to protect Georgia’s existing water quality standards, particularly those of the state’s coastal waters. It also provides for the implementation of the federally established “management measures” related to new development, watershed protection and site development in the Coastal Nonpoint Source Management Area and Area of Special Interest. To provide for the implementation of these “management measures, it provides comprehensive guidance on an integrated, green infrastructure-based approach to natural resource protection, stormwater management and site design that can be used by Georgia’s coastal communities to better protect coastal Georgia’s unique and vital natural resources from the negative impacts of land development and nonpoint source pollution.

Although communities may choose to use the information presented in this CSS to regulate new development and redevelopment activities, the document itself has no independent regulatory authority. The integrated approach to natural resource protection, stormwater management and site design detailed in this CSS can only become required through:

(a) Codes and ordinances established by local governments
(b) Rules and regulations established by other local, state and federal agencies (i.e. the Rules associated with the upland development component of new Coastal Marshlands Protection Act permits)

It is recommended that all communities located within Georgia’s 24-county coastal region, particularly those communities that are regulated by the NPDES Municipal Stormwater Program, use the information presented in this CSS, or an equivalent post-construction stormwater management manual, to regulate new development and redevelopment activities. Communities are encouraged to review and adapt the contents of this CSS, as necessary, to meet local watershed and stormwater management goals and objectives.

You may download each section below or the whole document *Note* LARGE file

Section 1.0: Introduction

Section 2.0: Coastal Natural Resources

Section 3.0: The Need for Natural Resource Protection and Stormwater Management

Section 4.0: Stormwater Management and Site Planning and Design Criteria

Section 5.0: Calculating the Stormwater Runoff Volumes Associated with the Stormwater Management Criteria

Section 6.0: Satisfying the Stormwater Management and Site Planning and Design Criteria

Section 7.0: Green Infrastructure Practices

Section 8.0: Stormwater Management Practices

Section 9.0: Local Post-Construction Stormwater Management Programs

Glossary and Appendices

Excel Spreadsheet *Updated December 2013*

Ensure your project design is consistent with the Coastal Stormwater Supplement with this easy to use tool.

User’s Guide: Coastal Stormwater Supplement Site Planning and Design Worksheet *New*

Frequently Asked Questions: Coastal Stormwater Supplement Site Planning and Design Worksheet *New*

Model Coastal Local Government Stormwater Management Ordinance

The purpose of this ordinance is to protect and maintain the integrity of local aquatic resources and, consequently, the health, safety and welfare of the general public, by establishing local stormwater management regulations that control and minimize the adverse impacts of the land development process. 

Stormwater Utility Handbook

This Handbook is intended to assist coastal communities in Georgia with the development of effective stormwater management programs to address local stormwater management needs, assist with funding local stormwater programs via a stormwater utility. It is designed to provide a concise, step-by-step process to help local governments in Georgia develop stormwater utilities. The Handbook, developed the University of Georgia River Basin Center, addresses the interconnection between a jurisdiction’s comprehensive stormwater management program and the setup of a local stormwater utility. It provides an overview of the typical step-by-step process used to establish a stormwater utility. Finally, the Handbook includes conclusions, additional resources, and contact information for jurisdictions in Georgia that have successfully implemented stormwater utilities.

Stormwater Monitoring BMP Protocol

This monitoring protocol provides information that can be used to evaluate the performance of green infrastructure and stormwater management practices in coastal Georgia. The protocol presents a simple, yet comprehensive monitoring approach that can be used to accurately evaluate the performance of a wide range of green infrastructure and traditional stormwater management practices.

Georgia Stormwater Management Manual ("blue book")