Moderated Discussion Notes

What follows is a summary of key points brought up during the open discussions that followed each session. There is a document that represents all the notes taken during these discussions but the following was distilled out from that by the organizers of the symposium. These key points can be used to help direct future projects or guide scientific research. We hope you find this useful.


Thursday’s Key Discussion Points

  1. Encouraging interaction and involvement amongst agencies­­ and private sector
  2. Getting ahead of urbanization will cost less when compared to restoration and future water supplies will benefit
  3. Long term monitoring to identify successes and learn from failures and Document, document, document.
  4. Awareness of potential reluctance to explore mistakes when there is a lot of money on the line.
  5. Along implementing your accepted BMPs, leave space for testing alternatives
  6. Public outreach to convey the goals, benefits, and expectations of your projects and hopefully influence their wants and acceptance of future code changes/votes
  7. Regulatory/governmental agencies need to find ways to work with private landowners.
  8. Research gaps:
    1. Effects of projects on microbial communities
  9. Get people to step out of comfort zones. Think outside the box or look at the system holistically
  10. Experience gap is a challenge in some agencies
  11. Codes/regulations and contractual procedures often impose constrains on innovation and experimentation
  12. Oversight of contractors with restoration/ecology specialist
  13. Ecology is messy! There is no one answer! Every situation is unique
  14. Now that we’ve got a few decades of data, they suggest some streams might be reaching stabilizing (Austin)
  15. Maintenance of green stormwater infrastructure considered in design
  16. Focus on headwater projects to address downstream problems
  17. Focus on soil prep/conditions from the beginning
  18. Humans are part of the systems
  19. Consider surface and groundwater interactions
  20. How to maximize passive restoration whenever possible



Friday’s Key Discussion Points

  1. Also looking at studying soil nitrogen. Nitrification and denitrification.
  2. Bacteria and riparian forest – dog parks and access
  3. Monitoring tools for citizens
  4. Economic incentives to promote green space/green infrastructure for urban developers and rural land owners
  5. Public education
  6. BMPs for trash and management
  7. Terminology of forest succession possibly problematic, resilience and disturbance not really incorporated, especially “climax” riparian – floodplain expect flood “disturbance”
  8. Preaching to choir-how do we get the message to others?
  9. School curriculum lacks quality earth science as is witnessed in adults lack of environmental knowledge
  10. Improve demographic diversity within field and reach a diverse public concerning environmental activities
  11. Target families toward restoration rather than individuals
  12. There are challenges in recruiting and managing volunteers
  13. You can’t just fight invasives on your own, using the native plants to combat invasives on a two pronged approach will be the most effective way to replace invasives.
  14. How do you balance nutrient cycling and leaving debris with the mission of conveyance?
  15. Challenges to having qualified contractors
  16. Better to get the soil just right. At bare minimum, realize that urban soils lack carbon, need to add, exact form is debatable. How to get more organic matter into soil, how to simulate underground storage riparian areas?
  17. Parameters needed to examine soil health
  18. How to get clear metrics to put into contracts along with oversight? Ideas/progress/needs?
  19. Have alternative indicators of success (insects, birds)?