At a Glance
After signing a joint agreement to protect and improve their shared watersheds, two major urban jurisdictions now have a solid framework for action items to improve water quality.
In 2006, Baltimore City and Baltimore County signed the Second Regional Watershed Agreement, signifying the jurisdictions’ shared commitment to improving water quality within their shared watersheds. In an effort to help the City and County begin to put this commitment into action, Biohabitats worked with both entities to develop the Baltimore Watershed Agreement Action Plan. The intent was to develop, organize and prioritize concrete action items to address five topic areas of water quality improvement: stormwater, community greening, development/redevelopment, public health and trash.
Biohabitats began by reviewing existing programs, studies and data, and assessing programmatic drivers such as the SWM Act of 2007, the City’s Sustainability Plan, Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) requirements and Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems programs. Biohabitats also identified similarities and differences between City and County efforts to address the five topic areas. Relationship diagrams were prepared to illustrate connections and gaps and identify opportunities and roadblocks to collaboration.Agreement among the two jurisdictions and their various departments as well as numerous stakeholders was essential for the successful completion of the Action Plan. To build consensus, Biohabitats and team member Francis Flannigan facilitated numerous sessions with County and City staff, community groups and nonprofit organizations.
The result of these efforts was the Baltimore Watershed Agreement Action Plan, a document which charts a course for a wide range of action items to improve water quality.