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Environmental Services

working for clean rivers

Phone: 503-823-7740

Fax: 503-823-6995

1120 SW 5th Avenue, Room 1000, Portland, OR 97204

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Storm Notes: VIDEO—As the Snow Melts

Where did the snow go? Here is a preliminary look at how Portland’s sewer and stormwater system performed during this week’s record snow that was followed by heavy rain. This page will be updated as storm data are calculated.

Stormwater treatment in action

Beginning Tuesday night, January 17 and continuing through January 18, Portland received an average of 1.94 inches of rain, falling on top of last week’s record snow. We captured footage on the rainiest day, Wednesday, of Portland’s stormwater system in action. Here is the initial footage, capturing in 88 seconds: the journey from street through a sophisticated system of ‘grey and green’ infrastructure that the City uses to absorb, filter and treat wastewater. 

As the Snow Melts, Environmental Services Work Begins from PortlandBES on Vimeo.

Combined Sewer Overflow

The rapid snowmelt coupled with heavy rain led to a rare combined sewer overflow (CSO) to the Willamette River Wednesday afternoon that continued for several hours. Since completing Portland’s CSO control program in 2011, the number of such overflows has dropped from about 50 each year to fewer than four per winter and once every three summers. This is the second overflow this winter season, the previous one occurred during Thanksgiving Day. 

Green InfrastructurePhoto of green street planter with snow

With every inch of rain, Portland's 1,800 green street planters collect and filter about 4.1 million gallons of stormwater runoff, and allow water to soak into the earth to replenish groundwater. During this storm, green streets are estimated to have managed about 8.2 million gallons of snow, ice and rain. With the snow not completely gone from green streets, they are still at work.

 


November 22-25, 2016 Storm Notes

Wastewater and stormwater management during the rain storm that began November 22, 2016

October 13-16, 2016 Storm Notes

Wastewater and stormwater management during the rain storm that began October 13, 2016

March 11–13, 2016 Storm Notes

Wastewater and stormwater management during the rain storm that began March 11, 2016

January 15, 2016 Storm Notes

Wastewater and stormwater management during the rain storm that began January 11, 2016

January 11, 2016 Storm Notes

Wastewater and stormwater management during the rain storm that began January 11, 2016

December 5, 2015 Storm Notes

Wastewater and stormwater management during the rain storm that began December 5, 2015