Environmental Services

Coastal Zone Management

Regional Environmental Managers Technical Committee

GWRC provides staff support to the Regional Environmental Managers Technical Committee, which is made up of local environmental planners, MS4/stormwater program managers/staff, development review personnel, Rappahannock River Basin Commission, and Soil & Water Conservation Districts, Friends of the Rappahannock, and other stakeholders. This group meets quarterly to discuss topics of mutual interest including any new or revised regulatory changes, best practices, and other matters important to the group. This group has been effective in facilitating and propagating the latest changes in the stormwater regulations and best practices.

Environmental Strategic Plan

GWRC is working with regional stakeholders to develop a multi-year strategic plan for coastal zone management that aligns with the goals and focus areas of the Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program and responds to the needs of our local jurisdictions. The plan identifies and prioritizes planning, design, construction, and outreach projects to provide a strategic direction for future CZM and other grants. Creating new partnerships and strengthen existing partnerships is aligning programs across the community, creating co-benefits, and making community leaders and local government leadership more aware of the opportunities available to the region when we partner on our most challenging environmental issues.

Chesapeake Bay Watershed Implementation Program

Virginia’s Watershed Implementation Plan

Stormwater runoff carries the pollutants directly to local waterways that feed the Chesapeake Bay. When pollutants like nitrogen and phosphorous get into streams and rivers, they act as nutrients causing harmful algae to grow faster than ecosystems can handle. The algae grow, blocking sunlight that bottom-dwelling plants need, and then the algae die, causing the fungi and bacteria which feed on the decomposing plant matter to produce toxins and use up the water’s dissolved oxygen, killing fish and marine life. Virginia developed a Watershed Implementation Plan in phases (2010, 2012, and 2019) to incorporate strategies to reduce nutrient pollution in our waterways.

Community Participation

GWRC includes many waterways; more than 40 state, county, and city parks; many battlefields and historic sites; and miles of sidewalks, shared use paths, and bike trails along those waterways. We need clean waterways for outdoor fun (kayaking, fishing, and swimming), public health (drinking water, seafood, and mental health), and natural habitats for native plants, birds, and animals. You help protect our local water quality. Every little bit helps! Learn the importance of keeping pollution out of our water and the best ways to do it.

Plant Central Rappahannock Natives Campaign

Plant Central Rapp Natives is a marketing campaign of a coalition of non-profit, governmental, and private partners, all working to reverse the decline of native plants and wildlife in Planning District 16. Visit the campaign website for more information.