Green Infrastructure: A Sustainable Solution for Stormwater Management in Cities at Risk


As climate change intensifies, cities, especially those below sea level or experiencing increased rainfall, face growing challenges in managing stormwater. Investing in green infrastructure for stormwater management is emerging as a sustainable and efficient solution. This approach is not only environmentally friendly but also economically viable, particularly for cities looking to issue new debt to fund these essential projects.

Understanding Green Infrastructure

Green infrastructure refers to practices that mimic natural processes to manage water sustainably. It includes techniques like rain gardens, permeable pavements, bioswales, and green roofs, which help capture, filter, and absorb stormwater. This reduces runoff, mitigates flooding, and improves water quality by naturally removing pollutants​​​​.

The Growing Need for Green Infrastructure

Cities are increasingly recognizing the importance of green infrastructure in addressing climate-related challenges. For example, urban areas with heavy rainfall or long dry periods followed by intense storms are particularly vulnerable. Green infrastructure can help these cities manage the increasing volume and intensity of stormwater more effectively than traditional "gray" infrastructure​​.

Funding through Municipal Bonds

Municipal bonds are a viable option for financing green infrastructure projects. With the growing need for improved stormwater management systems, issuing new debt to fund these projects can be a strategic move for cities. Public data sets from agencies like FEMA and NOAA can be instrumental in scoping and locating areas for green infrastructure projects, ensuring that bond proceeds are directed towards areas with the most significant needs.

Economic and Environmental Benefits

Investing in green infrastructure offers numerous benefits. Economically, it's often more cost-effective than traditional water management strategies. Environmentally, it enhances the sustainability of urban areas by reducing pollution, mitigating urban heat islands, and improving overall ecological health. Cities like Philadelphia have found that implementing green infrastructure plans is far cheaper than traditional gray infrastructure, with added benefits like increased water supply and reduced flooding risks​​.

Susterra Advantage

TerraScore uses proprietary methodology to evaluate multiple micro indicators such as soil water runoff in a bottom-up scenario analysis for a Green Infrastructure and using public data sets to localize insights to project flood damage reductions that can be tied directly to municipal government expense items related to Stormwater Management. These benefits in addition to other environmental and social benefits for communities through Econometric modeling indicate that there are strong financial returns in terms of tax revenue growth and expense reduction that cannot be captured through traditional financial analysis methods used to evaluate Municipal Bond opportunities today.


Green infrastructure represents a proactive and sustainable approach to managing stormwater in cities facing climate change-related challenges. By funding these projects through municipal bonds, cities can address their growing stormwater management needs while reaping both environmental and economic benefits. This strategic investment not only contributes to urban resilience but also supports a more sustainable future for communities at risk.


  1. Cities Are Learning to Manage Urban Stormwater the Way Nature Would
  2. What is Green Infrastructure? | US EPA
  3. Green Infrastructure: How to Manage Water in a Sustainable Way
  4. Why You Should Consider Green Stormwater Infrastructure for Your Community | US EPA
  5. Guidance for Municipal Stormwater Funding (