A set of steps leading down into Gulf Branch Nature Preserve was torn apart by the flood, and two ravines were created where there were none. The runoff carved out ravines as it flowed down to the Potomac.
Photo by Eden Brown.
Arlington’s tree canopy reduction may be part of the reason flooding was so severe this month.
According to Steve Young, a retired EPA staffer, longtime steward of Long Branch Park, Glen Carlyn Park, and other Arlington parks, and an Arlington Regional Master Naturalists instructor and affiliate, “A number of people suggested the flooding was caused by inadequate storm drains. While storm drain problems probably are a factor, a larger factor is our continuing removal of tree canopy and our covering more area with impervious surfaces like roofs and pavement that can't absorb water. Combined with heavy rainfall, the result is more water than drains can be expected to handle. We need solutions that reduce runoff.”