Experts on rainwater harvesting from
Green City Resources of Cincinnati, Ohio delivered a presentation as part of
Marshall’s Lunch and Learn Sustainability Lecture Series. Rose Seeger along
with Sean Mullarkey gave the hour-long lecture.
Seeger is co-owner of Green
City Resources and is a vegetated roof specialist, a profession involved in
harvesting rainwater. Mullarkey works
with Tri-State Water Works out of Cincinnati.
Seeger said rainwater harvesting is just
“Rainwater harvesting is simply the
catchment of water containing it and using it, that’s it. Its been done forever,
so it’s just deciding what you’re going to collect, how you’re going to
collect, what you’re going to water and what you’re going to use it for,”
Seeger works in the commercial field on
vegetated roofs, irrigation and commercial/residential rainwater harvesting
systems. Her company Green City Resources is a Cincinnati-based storm water
management company specializing in the design, installation and maintenance of
vegetated roofs, bioretention, rainwater harvesting and sustainable landscape
design. Seeger said rain like Huntington was having Tuesday can be a benefit to
the city and its people.
”The benefits mostly in a large city
like Huntington or Cincinnati is that combined sewer overflow, keeping that
storm water out of the sewage system, that’s number one. Number two is using
that water, reducing our carbon footprint, reducing our use and dependency on
municipality water,” Seeger said.
The company has worked on many designs
in the region including an American Red Cross Headquarters along with a public
school rooftop garden in Cincinnati.
Sean Mullarkey works with Seeger. He said
right now mainly businesses and universities are looking at the different
rainwater harvesting methods like roof gardens and rainwater tanks.
“You’re seeing it more in universities,
government agencies and some corporate centers, they’re adopting it and using
it for publicity and to be good to the environment and they want to have good
stewardship to the environment and they’re using it for that regards,”
Mullarkey said the top reason that many
cities are looking into rainwater harvesting is the problem with combined sewer
systems and the problem it creates when too much rain water is forced into the
system at one time.
“Yeah, that is the biggest reason I think
in the Midwest that rainwater harvesting is to stop the problem with the
combined sewer overflow and there is grant money and money available through
the different municipalities and the EPA has come down on a lot of cities and
Huntington is one of them to clean up their combine sewer problem,” Mullarkey
The Storm Water Coordinator for the city
of Huntington, Jennifer Williams, said the meeting was important for Huntington
as they continue to try to find ways to rainwater harvest.
“We feel like that the infrastructure
problems that the city has especially concerning our sanitary sewer are a huge
debilitating thing that’s going to continue to get worse cause we don’t have
the money to do the hard grey infrastructure and so we really need to look at
what does nature do to deal with this because we have to deal with this,”
The lecture was sponsored by Aetna
Building Maintenance and Marshall University.