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Evaluation of pollutant loads from stormwater BMPs to receiving water using load frequency curves with uncertainty analysis

Park, Daeryong, Roesner, Larry A.
Water research 2012 v.46 no.20 pp. 6881-6890
basins, best management practices, compliance, hydrologic models, managers, pollutants, preferential flow, stormwater, total maximum daily load, total suspended solids, uncertainty, uncertainty analysis, water quality, watersheds, California
This study examined pollutant loads released to receiving water from a typical urban watershed in the Los Angeles (LA) Basin of California by applying a best management practice (BMP) performance model that includes uncertainty. This BMP performance model uses the k-C* model and incorporates uncertainty analysis and the first-order second-moment (FOSM) method to assess the effectiveness of BMPs for removing stormwater pollutants. Uncertainties were considered for the influent event mean concentration (EMC) and the aerial removal rate constant of the k-C* model. The storage treatment overflow and runoff model (STORM) was used to simulate the flow volume from watershed, the bypass flow volume and the flow volume that passes through the BMP. Detention basins and total suspended solids (TSS) were chosen as representatives of stormwater BMP and pollutant, respectively. This paper applies load frequency curves (LFCs), which replace the exceedance percentage with an exceedance frequency as an alternative to load duration curves (LDCs), to evaluate the effectiveness of BMPs. An evaluation method based on uncertainty analysis is suggested because it applies a water quality standard exceedance based on frequency and magnitude. As a result, the incorporation of uncertainty in the estimates of pollutant loads can assist stormwater managers in determining the degree of total daily maximum load (TMDL) compliance that could be expected from a given BMP in a watershed.