Oregon Curriculum Info related to the

Sustainable Principles for Land Development for Educators

Sustainability for all the places between the buildings.

BMP Costs & Benefits & Links to Additional Info

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The premise of this presentation and many of the activities listed on this page would meet the Oregon Science (2009) Standard H.2L.2 Explain how ecosystems change in response to disturbances and interactions. Analyze the relationships among biotic and abiotic factors in ecosystems.

Master Planning
Integrated Design Teams
Choose Good Materials
Limit Distrubance
Salvage for Use On-Site
Salvage for Use Off-Site
Recycle Construction Materials
Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Source Control-Compost
Source Control-Filter Sacks
Save a Tree
Overland Flow/Daylighting
Limit Compaction
Reduce Impervious Surfaces
Conservation Development
Pervious Surfaces
Vegetated Infiltration Facilities
Native Plants
Underground Injection Control
Eco-roofs
Rainwater Harvesting
Incentives & Certifications

My current project:
Sustainable Land Development Resources for Design & Deliverables

Key to Symbols

Green Goals

Promote biodiversity Promote biodiversity

Protect water quality & quantity Protect water quality

Protect water quantity

Reduce demand for natural resources Protect air quality

Protect air quality Reduce demand for natural resources

Reduce greenhouse gas emissions Reduce greenhouse gas emissions

 

Cost Implications

-$ This BMP saves money.

$ This BMP is cost nuetral.

+$ This BMP adds cost to the project.

Ecosystem Products and Services

H.2E.4 Evaluate the impact of human activities on environmental quality and the sustainability of Earth systems. Describe how environmental factors influence resource management.

 

Ask your students to consider an ordinary item in the room (aka ecosystem product) and list what that item's materials were created from (i.e. pencil: wood & lead). Then list the natural processes that would be needed to support the creation of these materials in the natural world. (i.e. wood needs healthy soil, sun light, water , and wind, so soil formation, nutrient cycling, carbon sequestration, , etc. ). These are ecosystems services that provided us with a product.

 

Master Planning
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions -$

Municipal, State, & Federal Guidelines Research

SS.HS.CG.03.01 Understand how laws are developed and applied to provide order, set limits, protect basic rights, and promote the common good.

SS.HS.CG.02.01 Understand the primary function of federal, state, and local levels of government and how the actions of one influence the workings of the others.

Look at federal, state, and local laws relating to water quality issues. Federal laws that affect us here in Oregon are the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and the Clean Water Act, (Section 319). In addition, the Environmental Protection Agency is the federal permitting authority for setting water quality standards. They issue an MS4 (Municipalities with Separate Storm Sewer Systems) permit to the state that requires the state to permit communities over a particular population. The state’s role is to set standards that will meet the federal laws (mentioned above) and regulate the implementation. Governments of the various regulated areas at the city or county level must create stormwater management plans that work for their community. Often, this includes things like outreach to residents to educate them about non-point source pollution and stormwater management manuals for development. (Click here to see the City of Portland's stormwater management manual).

Integrated Design Teams
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions -$

Stakeholder Process

H.4D.6 Evaluate ways that ethics, public opinion, and government policy influence the work of engineers and scientists, and how the results of their work impact human society and the environment.

Hold an eco-charrette in your class on retrofitting your school property to incorporate green infrastructure. Establish numerical and qualitative goals for the effort. Have students use the results of their research in the master planning phase to inform decisions about how to meet the environmental and social needs of the school and wider community. Concentrate on retrofits or maintenance approaches that could be improved at the school. Ask them to consider how current stakeholders might view these changes.

Community Service Project: Consider implementing some of the student's ideas through grants and fundraising events voluntarily organized by the students.

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Choose Good Materials
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions $

Ask your students to think about what makes a material "good". Is a durable product with a toxic life cycle better or worse for the environment and community health than a non-toxic less durable product? Is a "good" local product better than a "great" product from farther away? In what ways does consumption and our choice of products affect the economic and physical health of the community?

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Limit Disturbance
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions -$

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Save a Tree
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions -$

MA.HS.ME.11 Make and use scale drawings and models to solve problems.
MA.HS.GM.18 Calculate slope, distance and midpoint between points with an emphasis on
practical applications (use coordinate formulas).

Give your students a grading problem to incorporate a building into a site. Provide them with an aerial or plan of the existing site that shows 1' contours and the location and size of existing trees. Also provide them with the footprint of the building. Ask your students to place the building and a driveway onto the site in such a way that kills the least number of trees and have them create a proposed grading plan that won't cut more than 6" and fill more than 12" under the dripline of any trees to be saved.

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Salvage for Use On-Site/Off-Site and Recycle Construction Materials
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions -$

H.2P.3 Describe the interactions of energy and matter including the law of conservation of energy.

The embodied energy in construction materials is essentially the amount of energy it takes to turn matter from one form to another more “useful” form and to transport it to it final destination of use. Ask your students to investigate the embodied energy of different common materials in the classroom  (wood, steel, alumimum, glass). Using embodied energy coefficients that look only at the production of the material, asks students to evaluate how the embodied energy of materials might vary with the quantity and what materials would comprise the highest and lowest amounts of embodied energy in a building. (Concrete tends to the highest because there's so much of it even though it's embodied energy tends to be low.) Ask students to suggest other ways that energy might be added to a material. Learning objectives should include the difference between using salvaged materials, recycled materials, and new materials.

This would also be a good time for a discussion of embodied water. Ask your students to think about other materials and processes that might be needed to make stuff.

You may want to share the 20-minute video called "The Story of Stuff". This 20-minute video discusses how extraction, production, distrubition, consumption, and disposal of materials affects the environmental, our health, our workers, and the global economy. The interactive website I've linked to it pretty cool!

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions $

Site Inventory for Energy Analysis

 

H.2E.4 Evaluate the impact of human activities on environmental quality and the sustainability of Earth systems. Describe how environmental factors influence resource management.

H.3S.1 Based on observations and science principles formulate a question or hypothesis that can be investigated through the collection and analysis of relevant information.

Ask you students to form a hypothesis on energy demand at the school.

H.3S.2 Design and conduct a controlled experiment, field study, or other investigation to make
systematic observations about the natural world, including the collection of sufficient and appropriate data.


Ask your students to walk their high school site and inventory it. Ask them to:

  • locate deciduous and evergreen trees
  • assess the orientation of the building (long axis should be east-west to maximize solar gain in the winter)
  • locate wind tunnels
  • locate cooler and hotter areas (microclimates) around the site

H.3S.3 Analyze data and identify uncertainties. Draw a valid conclusion, explain how it is supported by the evidence, and communicate the findings of a scientific investigation.

Break your students into small workgroups and ask your students to do this together in a collaborative effort.

H.4D.1 Define a problem and specify criteria for a solution within specific constraints or limits based on science principles. Generate several possible solutions to a problem and use the concept of trade-offs to compare them in terms of criteria and constraints.

The defined problem is how to reduce energey demand and the corresponding greenhouse gas emissions at the school. Ask your students to work in small breakout groups to do this. Possible solutions might include planting trees on the south side of the building (see the NREL documentation on more BMPs); cutting down or relocating some vegetation (lots of trade-offs to talk about there!); and installing on-site renewable power like solar panels, wind turbines, geothermal, or hydroelectric (could we harvest energy by turning turbines inside our downspouts? Some people are working on it!).

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Water Quality from Different Land Covers
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions -$

Site Inventory for Stormwater Quality

H.2E.4 Evaluate the impact of human activities on environmental quality and the sustainability of Earth
systems. Describe how environmental factors influence resource management.

H.3S.1 Based on observations and science principles formulate a question or hypothesis that can be
investigated through the collection and analysis of relevant information.

Ask your students to create a hypothesis about land cover types and water quality at their school.

H.3S.2 Design and conduct a controlled experiment, field study, or other investigation to make
systematic observations about the natural world, including the collection of sufficient and appropriate data.


Ask your students to walk their high school site and inventory it. Ask them to:

  • estimate the amount of impervious area (roofs, sidewalks, roads, parking lots, etc.)
  • identify land covers and the kinds of pollutants that might be coming from them (examples: lawns=fertlizers, pesticides,and pet waste; impervious areas=chemicals from cars and temperature (from dark surfaces); roofs=acid rain and bird poop; bare soils=sediments)
  • identify sources of possible pollution (trash and recycling bins or other stored materials that have no lids or roofs over them, places to wash off stuff where runoff will drain to a catch basin without treatment, uncovered vehicle parking areas, stockpiled materials like compost or gravel without erosion control)

H.3S.3 Analyze data and identify uncertainties. Draw a valid conclusion, explain how it is supported by
the evidence, and communicate the findings of a scientific investigation.

Break your students into small workgroups and ask your students to do this together in a collaborative effort.

H.4D.1 Define a problem and specify criteria for a solution within specific constraints or limits based on
science principles. Generate several possible solutions to a problem and use the concept of trade-offs to
compare them in terms of criteria and constraints.


The defined problem is how to improve the quality of runoff from the school. Solutions should include strategies to prevent the pollutants from being a problem in the first place (ban cars from the campus, depave, cover all parking spaces with a roof to downgrade pollutants from vehicular pollutants to roof pollutants, etc) or treating afterward (water quality catch basins, raingardens, etc).

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Native Plants
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions -$

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Limit Compaction
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions -$

MA.HS.AR.02 Produce a valid conjecture using inductive reasoning by generalizing from a pattern of observations.

MA.HS.ME.02 Solve problems involving unit conversions (e.g., mile per hour to feet per second)
given the unit equivalencies.


Ask your students to calculate the pressure in pounds/square foot that the soil will experience from the scenarios below. Assume the same load L=40 tons is applied equally over the top of the structure of the vehicle. Which approach will cause the least compaction? the most compaction? How will soil consistency/moisture contect affect the degree of compaction?

Track equipment:

2 trackscontact area of each track = 2'x10'

 

Conventional truck:

4 truck tires, contact area of each tire = 58 square inches

Flotation tire equipment:

4 flotation tires, contact area of each tire = 310 square inches

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Reduce Impervious Surfaces
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions -$

Site Inventory for Stormwater Quality

H.2E.4 Evaluate the impact of human activities on environmental quality and the sustainability of Earth
systems. Describe how environmental factors influence resource management.

H.3S.1 Based on observations and science principles formulate a question or hypothesis that can be
investigated through the collection and analysis of relevant information.

Ask your students to create a hypothesis about land cover types and water quality at their school.

H.3S.2 Design and conduct a controlled experiment, field study, or other investigation to make
systematic observations about the natural world, including the collection of sufficient and appropriate data.


Ask your students to walk their high school site and inventory it. Ask them to:

  • estimate the amount of impervious area (roofs, sidewalks, roads, parking lots, etc.)
  • identify land covers and the kinds of pollutants that might be coming from them (examples: lawns=fertlizers, pesticides,and pet waste; impervious areas=chemicals from cars and temperature (from dark surfaces); roofs=acid rain and bird poop; bare soils=sediments)
  • identify sources of possible pollution (trash and recycling bins or other stored materials that have no lids or roofs over them, places to wash off stuff where runoff will drain to a catch basin without treatment, uncovered vehicle parking areas, stockpiled materials like compost or gravel without erosion control)

H.3S.3 Analyze data and identify uncertainties. Draw a valid conclusion, explain how it is supported by
the evidence, and communicate the findings of a scientific investigation.

Break your students into small workgroups and ask your students to do this together in a collaborative effort.

H.4D.1 Define a problem and specify criteria for a solution within specific constraints or limits based on
science principles. Generate several possible solutions to a problem and use the concept of trade-offs to
compare them in terms of criteria and constraints.


The defined problem is how to improve the quality of runoff from the school. Solutions should include strategies to prevent the pollutants from being a problem in the first place (ban cars from the campus, depave, cover all parking spaces with a roof to downgrade pollutants from vehicular pollutants to roof pollutants, etc) or treating afterward (water quality catch basins, raingardens, etc).

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Conservation Development
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions -$

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Overland Flow/Daylighting/Conveyance
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions -$

MA.HS.AR.01 Represent and generalize sequences resulting from linear, quadratic, and exponential relationships using recursive or explicit formulas tables of values and graphs.
MA.HS.AR.02 Produce a valid conjecture using inductive reasoning by generalizing from a pattern of observations.
MA.HS.AR.02 Produce a valid conjecture using inductive reasoning by generalizing from a pattern of observations.

Ask your students to use the Manning's equation to estimate and compare the velocity of runoff in various conveyance facilities. The most common are a plastic pipe, a grass lined channel/swale, and a rocky channel/swale. Have them experiment with vary slope and, for swales, channel shape in plan ("straight and uniform" or "winding and sluggish"). Find Manning's n values here. Ask them to comment on how manmade conveyance systems compare to natural systems and what the ecological impacts might be.

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Source Control-Compost
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air quality -$

H.2P.4 Apply the laws of motion and gravitation to describe the interaction of forces acting on an object
and the resultant motion.

To do an experiment on turbidity, caused by negatively charged clay particles bouncing off of one another, provide your students with some sand (from a home improvement store) and ask your students to collect some soil from their backyards to bring in. Ask students to place their soil in one jar with water and some sand in another jar with water. Put the lids on the jars and shake them up. What happens? Is there clay in the water that's causing turbidity? How long does it take for different sized particles to settle out? To maximize this experiment to show how clay particles cause turbidity, the educator could source some soil that is mostly clay and perform the same experiment. Check back in a couple of weeks. What color is the water? Have the clay particles settled out?

Here's an experiment to measure turbidity, but it looks like you need some special instruments...

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Source Control-Filter Sacks
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air quality -$

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Pervious Surfaces
Protect water quality & quantityProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions $

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Vegetated Infiltration Facilities
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions -$

MA.HS.ME.11 Make and use scale drawings and models to solve problems.

MA.HS.PS.05 Accurately solve problems using mathematics.

H.4D.1 Define a problem and specify criteria for a solution within specific constraints or limits based on science principles. Generate several possible solutions to a problem and use the concept of trade-offs to compare them in terms of criteria and constraints.

Ask your students to design raingardens for the school. Have them create a scaled drawing of the school. They might start with an aerial printed at a particular scale and then fill in dimensions and other features that need to be considered. To design the raingarden, they will have to calculate impervious surfaces; identify on-site soils through infiltration testing, visual identification, and with the Web Soil Survey; and size the garden with a SIM form. Here's a PowerPoint presentation I put together on construction and siting considerations.

MA.HS.ME.05 Use formulas to solve problems involving finding missing dimensions given perimeter, area, surface area and volume of polygons, circles, prisms, pyramids, cones, cylinders, and spheres.

Ask your students to estimate the volume of water that the raingarden will hold when it's 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, and completely full. This is akin to a stage-storage calculation that engineers have to do when designing facilities that will hold water for a period of time. As the basin fills up, water is also leaving (either "discarded" by infiltration out the bottom of the facility (aka raingarden, which is ideal) or out a pipe with a control structure to a public system (aka detention system, which is much less than ideal). We have to make sure that the system isn't going to overflow at any particular time. I think that's a little complicated for your students to actually perform calcuations for, but estimating the volume of an irregularly or regularly shaped basin does have real world applications.

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Underground Injection Control
-$

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Eco-roofs
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesReduce greenhouse gas emissions +$

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Rainwater Harvesting
Protect water quality & quantityProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions +$

Ask your students to build a rain barrel, see page 4 of City of Portland's bi-monthly publication, Plans Examiner of July/Aug 2009.

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Incentives & Certifications
Promote biodiversityProtect water quality & quantityReduce demand for natural resourcesProtect air qualityReduce greenhouse gas emissions $

Additional Resources including Strategies, Costs, Benefits, and links to other websites

Green Web Hosting! This site hosted by DreamHost. This web site has been designed with a black background and white text to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while viewing it and is hosted by Dreamhost, a carbon neutral company. Please consider the environment when printing this or mailing me things or traveling to see me for a meeting or... Oh, just consider the environment as much as you can!

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