According to the Cape Coral plumbers at The Pipewright, rainwater runoff presents a surprising threat to our water supply with the runoff carrying pollutants into the surface waters. This is a byproduct of the runoff process rather than the actual rainwater. When the water travels across some surfaces it can come into contact with and carry along some metals and other impurities. But the good news is that there are advancements that help solve this problem, specifically, permeable pavements. By installing driveways, parking lots, and even roads using permeable technologies, homeowners and others can take their environmental responsibilities to a new level.
Permeable pavements come in several varieties including permeable concrete, grid, and interlocking implementations. But the one thing they all have in common is their ability to allow runoff water to penetrate into the ground rather than being diverted into drainage systems and allowing the water to potentially pick up the contaminants that can enter our surface waters. Some implementations of permeable technologies also act as a filtering system to remove pollutants and improve the water quality.
For homeowners wanting to do the "green" thing, the best time to implement a permeable pavement is when one is building a new home. It would take a very committed individual to replace a perfectly fine driveway with a permeable alternative. While it would certainly be commendable, it is not really practical. When planning your new driveway, there are several types of materials and design used in the construction of these pavements. Porous asphalt is used primarily for walkways and some driveways where there won't be a tremendous amount of weight travelling over it. Where there is a need to support more traffic, such as a parking lot, porous concrete materials would be a better match for the requirements. You may also have seen some implementations that use connected grids that are filled with sand or gravel. These make for a pleasing aesthetic look while being able to support very heavy vehicles.
For more information on the advantages of permeable pavements and the success rates of the various materials used in their construction, the researchers at North Carolina State University have a site full of research materials. With so many benefits to the environment, permeable pavements make for a great option to the traditional driveways and parking lots so look into the options when you are building a new home or business and a driveway or parking lot is involved.