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Assessing performance of porous pavements and bioretention cells for stormwater management in response to probable climatic changes

Wang, Mo, Zhang, Dongqing, Cheng, Yuning, Tan, Soon Keat
Journal of environmental management 2019 v.243 pp. 157-167
bioretention areas, case studies, climate, climate change, cost effectiveness, pavements, rain, runoff, storms, watersheds
The effectiveness of porous pavement (PP) and bio-retention cells (BCs) under the influence of potential climate change was investigated based on representative concentration pathways (RCPs). A case study of a test catchment in Guangzhou illustrated changes of peak runoff under various climate scenarios. There were distinct increases in runoff volume and peak discharge in response to RCP8.5 but only marginal increases in response to RCP2.6 (compared with present conditions). The performance of PP and BCs in terms of percentage reduction of runoff volume and peak discharge was examined for 1-, 10-, and 100-year return period and 1- and 6-h-duration storms under various climate scenarios. The effectiveness of PP and BCs varied non-linearly with the extent of PP and BCs adopted. In general, the fluctuation of hydrological performance of PP is greater than that of BCs in RCP2.6 and RCP8.5 (e.g., peak flow reductions range from −60% to 69% and from −22% to 9%, for 5% area of PP and BCs, respectively). And PP is more cost-effective for frequent storms using life cycle costing analysis. We find that PP and BCs could significantly reduce runoff volume and peak discharge in response to rainfall events with short return period, but not for heavy storms with longer return period.