Role of rainfall and catchment characteristics on urban stormwater quality

Liu, An, Goonetilleke, Ashantha, & Egodawatta, Prasanna (2015) Role of rainfall and catchment characteristics on urban stormwater quality. SpringerBriefs in Water Science and Technology. Springer, Singapore.

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Urbanisation significantly changes the characteristics of a catchment as natural areas are transformed to impervious surfaces such as roads, roofs and parking lots. The increased fraction of impervious surfaces leads to changes to the stormwater runoff characteristics, whilst a variety of anthropogenic activities common to urban areas generate a range of pollutants such as nutrients, solids and organic matter. These pollutants accumulate on catchment surfaces and are removed and trans- ported by stormwater runoff and thereby contribute pollutant loads to receiving waters. In summary, urbanisation influences the stormwater characteristics of a catchment, including hydrology and water quality.

Due to the growing recognition that stormwater pollution is a significant environmental problem, the implementation of mitigation strategies to improve the quality of stormwater runoff is becoming increasingly common in urban areas. A scientifically robust stormwater quality treatment strategy is an essential requirement for effective urban stormwater management. The efficient design of treatment systems is closely dependent on the state of knowledge in relation to the primary factors influencing stormwater quality. In this regard, stormwater modelling outcomes provide designers with important guidance and datasets which significantly underpin the design of effective stormwater treatment systems. Therefore, the accuracy of modelling approaches and the reliability modelling outcomes are of particular concern.

This book discusses the inherent complexity and key characteristics in the areas of urban hydrology and stormwater quality, based on the influence exerted by a range of rainfall and catchment characteristics. A comprehensive field sampling and testing programme in relation to pollutant build-up, an urban catchment monitoring programme in relation to stormwater quality and the outcomes from advanced statistical analyses provided the platform for the knowledge creation.

Two case studies and two real-world applications are discussed to illustrate the translation of the knowledge created to practical use in relation to the role of rainfall and catchment characteristics on urban stormwater quality. An innovative rainfall classification based on stormwater quality was developed to support the effective and scientifically robust design of stormwater treatment systems. Underpinned by the rainfall classification methodology, a reliable approach for design rainfall selection is proposed in order to optimise stormwater treatment based on both, stormwater quality and quantity. This is a paradigm shift from the common approach where stormwater treatment systems are designed based solely on stormwater quantity data.

Additionally, how pollutant build-up and stormwater runoff quality vary with a range of catchment characteristics was also investigated. Based on the study out- comes, it can be concluded that the use of only a limited number of catchment parameters such as land use and impervious surface percentage, as it is the case in current modelling approaches, could result in appreciable error in water quality estimation. Influential factors which should be incorporated into modelling in relation to catchment characteristics, should also include urban form and impervious surface area distribution.

The knowledge created through the research investigations discussed in this monograph is expected to make a significant contribution to engineering practice such as hydrologic and stormwater quality modelling, stormwater treatment design and urban planning, as the study outcomes provide practical approaches and recommendations for urban stormwater quality enhancement. Furthermore, this monograph also demonstrates how fundamental knowledge of stormwater quality processes can be translated to provide guidance on engineering practice, the comprehensive application of multivariate data analyses techniques and a paradigm on integrative use of computer models and mathematical models to derive practical outcomes.

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ID Code: 84004
Item Type: Book
Keywords: Catchment urbanisation, Hydrologic modelling, Impervious surface layout, MIKE URBAN model, Pollutant sources, Rainfall classification, Stormwater pollutant processes, Stormwater pollutants, Stormwater quality, Stormwater quality modelling, Stormwater treatment design, Urban form, Water quality modelling
DOI: 10.1007/978-981-287-459-7
ISBN: 9789812874580
ISSN: 2194-7244
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENGINEERING (090000) > CIVIL ENGINEERING (090500) > Water Quality Engineering (090508)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Civil Engineering & Built Environment
Current > Schools > School of Earth, Environmental & Biological Sciences
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Deposited On: 10 May 2015 23:07
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2015 23:53

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