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Spatial evaluation of the multiple benefits of sustainable drainage systems

Morgan, M and Fenner, R (2017) Spatial evaluation of the multiple benefits of sustainable drainage systems. Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers - Water Management. pp. 1-14. ISSN 1741-7589

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Infrastructure and construction projects are usually implemented and justified on the basis that they convey some benefit to stakeholders. Different stakeholders can experience different benefits and to different degrees. For example, a Sustainable Drainage System (SuDS), may provide flood protection to a downstream community but provide little additional protection to the host community. Meanwhile, the host community may experience benefits from additional greenspace which may result in improved health or increases in property values in the long term while suffering a temporary dis-benefit related to the construction of the SuDS. Traditional approaches to understanding these trade-offs such as cost-benefit analysis and ecosystem services methods often rely on value transfer to convert each benefit into a monetary value which can then be compared to the cost of the project. This approach, while well-developed, is limited because it does not systematically incorporate the spatial nature of the benefits. This paper discusses the development of an alternative way of evaluating and comparing benefits, which allows spatial distribution and local context and circumstances to be taken into consideration. The suggested approach is to create a score for each benefit category which is normalised against a defined initial condition state on a scale of 0-10. This approach allows a direct comparison of the relative magnitude of benefits for a given location and provides a clear understanding of how (and to whom) multiple benefits accrue. The approach allows a singular significant benefit to be compared against many minor benefits, and the method can easily be modified to reflect local stakeholder preferences by weighting each benefit category appropriately. The method is demonstrated by the application to 3 locations in Newcastle in northern England.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Sustainable Drainage Systems green infrastructure multiple benefits
Divisions: Div D > Sustainable Development
Depositing User: Cron Job
Date Deposited: 17 Jul 2017 19:56
Last Modified: 19 Jun 2018 02:15