Influence of uncertainty inherent to heavy metal build-up and wash-off on stormwater quality

Wijesiri, Buddhi, Egodawatta, Prasanna, McGree, James, & Goonetilleke, Ashantha (2016) Influence of uncertainty inherent to heavy metal build-up and wash-off on stormwater quality. Water Research, 91, pp. 264-276.

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Uncertainty inherent to heavy metal build-up and wash-off stems from process variability. This results in inaccurate interpretation of stormwater quality model predictions. The research study has characterised the variability in heavy metal build-up and wash-off processes based on the temporal variations in particle-bound heavy metals commonly found on urban roads. The study outcomes found that the distribution of Al, Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni, Cu, Zn, Cd and Pb were consistent over particle size fractions <150µm and >150µm, with most metals concentrated in the particle size fraction <150µm. When build-up and wash-off are considered as independent processes, the temporal variations in these processes in relation to the heavy metals load are consistent with variations in the particulate load. However, the temporal variations in the load in build-up and wash-off of heavy metals and particulates are not consistent for consecutive build-up and wash-off events that occur on a continuous timeline. These inconsistencies are attributed to interactions between heavy metals and particulates <150µm and >150µm, which are influenced by particle characteristics such as organic matter content. The behavioural variability of particles determines the variations in the heavy metals load entrained in stormwater runoff. Accordingly, the variability in build-up and wash-off of particle-bound pollutants needs to be characterised in the description of pollutant attachment to particulates in stormwater quality modelling. This will ensure the accounting of process uncertainty, and thereby enhancing the interpretation of the outcomes derived from modelling studies.

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ID Code: 93595
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Heavy metals, Pollutant build-up, Pollutant wash-off, Process uncertainty, Stormwater quality, Stormwater pollutant processes
DOI: 10.1016/j.watres.2016.01.028
ISSN: 0043-1354
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 > Schools > School of Mathematical Sciences
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Facilities: Central Analytical Research Facility
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2016 Elsevier Ltd.
Copyright Statement: Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution; Non-Commercial; No-Derivatives 4.0 International. DOI: 10.1016/j.watres.2016.01.028
Deposited On: 10 Mar 2016 05:44
Last Modified: 15 Mar 2016 04:39

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