Students at Musselmen High School (Inwood, WV)
studied stormwater runoff and non-point source
pollution throughout the 2008-2009 school year.
One of the issues they looked at was impervious
surfaces, the surfaces where rain water can not pass
through into the ground. Roads, parking lots,
and buildings are examples of structures that are
impervious. Impervious surfaces, because they
do not allow rain water to infiltrate into the
ground, cause water to run off. This can
cause excessive stormwater runoff and that can cause
erosion. Erosion, small particles of soil
coming loose from the ground and entering streams is
a problem for aquatic habitat. Excessive
erosion, that can lead to sediment, or muddy
bottoms, destroys aquatic habitat because it fills
in the area on the stream bottom between rocks where
many animals live. See
macroinvertebrates for more.
Planting a green roof reduces stormwater run off
because much of the rain water is collected in the
plants and soil and never leaves the roof.
second day students and volunteers move 12,000
pounds of a soil mix onto the roof.
final day students added plants and watered.
The plants will grow over time to fill all the
Cacapon Institute, as part of the Chesapeake Bay Program’s
Education Work Group, will help schools connect with local
watershed and conservation groups. We encourage schools and
watershed groups alike to use our
Potomac Highland Watershed School
to connect students to local issues in the context of regional
watershed protection. Connecting students to real world activities
within an academic framework is the foundation for a
Watershed Educational Experience, a
Learning requirement for D.C., MD, PA, and VA students.
Funding for this project came from the
West Virginia Commission for National and Community Service,
National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, and NOAA-BWET.
Funding for West Virginia Commission for National and Community
Service and Potomac Headwaters Leaders of Watersheds
Service-Learning Project is provided by a Learn and Serve America:
Community-Based Grant from the Corporation for National and
Institute - From the Cacapon to the Potomac to the Chesapeake Bay,
we protect rivers and watersheds using science and education.
possible by funding from The Norcross Wildlife Foundation, the
National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Virginia Environmental
Endowment, NOAA-BWET, USEPA, The MARPAT Foundation, and our generous