A geographic information system screening tool to tackle diffuse pollution through the use of sustainable drainage systems

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

Sustainable drainage systems (SUDS) offer many benefits that traditional solutions do not. Traditional approaches are unable to offer a solution to problems of flood management and water quality. Holistic consideration of the wide range of benefits from SUDS can result in advantages such as improved flood resilience and water quality enhancement through consideration of diffuse pollution sources. Using a geographical information system (GIS) approach, diffuse pollutant sources and opportunities for SUDS are easily identified. Consideration of potential SUDS locations results in source, site and regional controls, leading to improved water quality (to meet Water Framework Directive targets). The paper will discuss two different applications of the tool, the first of which is where the pollutant of interest is known. In this case the outputs of the tool highlight and isolate the areas contributing the pollutants and suggest the adequate SUDS measures to meet the required criteria. The second application is where the tool identifies likely pollutants at a receiving location, and SUDS measures are proposed to reduce pollution with assessed efficiencies.

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