This is a typical street in our industrial areas.  I believe car parking areas can & should be permeable surfaces to help with stormwater.

This is a brilliant video from Tree People – a community tree-planting group operating in Los Angeles.  It is narrated by Andy Lipkis the founder of Tree People who clearly explains how trees affect our water system.

He explains how fallen leaves make mulch, which feeds the soil & encourages microbes & small creatures to live within the root system.  This eventually becomes humus, new soil, incredibly important since the world is rapidly losing topsoil vital for growing food & almost everything else.

The video shows how trees capture rain & stops it becoming stormwater, instead feeding the aquifer. Stormwater on the other hand becomes polluted water when it picks up oils, chemicals & other stuff on hard ground surfaces before taking this water to local creeks, streams, lakes & in our case, the Cooks River & the Alexander Canal.

Flooding like this when it rains is a familiar sight on our roads across Marrickville municipality

Interfering with this cycle by covering the ground with impervious surfaces in urban areas has interrupted the watershed & caused not only problems with polluting our water systems, but stormwater also predisposes us to floods.

Stormwater is wasted water & costs the community millions of dollars every year.

Andy Lipkin shows the process & the economic cost for Los Angeles & links this all to climate change.  Rain gardens, swales, roof water collection all replenish the groundwater & prevent all the problems that go with stormwater runoff.

Tree People aim to transform the landscape of Los Angeles by simply increasing the tree canopy & transforming streets with rain-collecting gardens that make the area functional, low maintenance, great for the urban wildlife, as well as good to look at.  All that is being done in Los Angeles can be done here in Marrickville LGA.

The residents of Chippendale are doing something very similar under the guidance of Michael Mobbs & with the full support of the City of Sydney Council.  The aim is to capture all the stormwater in this area of Chippendale for use by the residents who will end up having substantially less water bills.  I’ll revisit what is happening in Chippendale at a later date.

You can watch the video here –

This area in Tempe Reserve is a perfect area for a raingarden.  Stormwater rushes along these purpose-built channels, under the road & straight into the Cooks River taking massive amounts of plastic bottles & other litter with it. A raingarden here would be immensely beneficial to the environment & help clean the stormwater before it enters the river.