Carbon sequestration potential for mitigating the carbon footprint of green stormwater infrastructure

Emad Kavehei, G. A. Jenkins, M. F. Adame, C. Lemckert

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Green stormwater infrastructure is a common feature of urban cities which is mostly designed for hydrological and water quality purposes. The last decade has seen a rise in research on the environmental impact assessment of vegetated water sensitive urban design (WSUD) technologies. However, the added ecosystem benefits of these systems, such as carbon sequestration, have received less attention. In this study, the life cycle net carbon footprint of various vegetated WSUD technologies namely green roofs, rain gardens, bioretention basins, vegetated swales and stormwater ponds, have been reviewed and analysed including their carbon sequestration potential. The carbon footprint of each vegetated WSUD technology was evaluated through the four phases of the life cycle assessment (LCA): material production, construction, operation and maintenance and end-of-life phases. The results of this study show that the initial embodied carbon associated with production, transportation and construction phases is the major contributor to the carbon footprint for most of the vegetated WSUD technologies. Rain gardens are shown to provide the highest carbon sequestration potential which offsets its carbon footprint. Carbon sequestration of bioretention basins, green roofs, vegetated swales and stormwater ponds can mitigate approximately 70%, 68%, 45% and 8% of their carbon footprint respectively. This study demonstrates the significant role of carbon sequestration in mitigating the carbon footprint from the assigned life time of the vegetated WSUD technologies. The results presented in this study will allow designers and policymakers to include the carbon implication in their WSUD strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1179-1191
Number of pages13
JournalRenewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
Volume94
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2018

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Carbon footprint
Carbon
Water
Ponds
Catchments
Roofs
Rain
Life cycle
Environmental technology
Environmental impact assessments
Ecosystems
Water quality

Cite this

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title = "Carbon sequestration potential for mitigating the carbon footprint of green stormwater infrastructure",
abstract = "Green stormwater infrastructure is a common feature of urban cities which is mostly designed for hydrological and water quality purposes. The last decade has seen a rise in research on the environmental impact assessment of vegetated water sensitive urban design (WSUD) technologies. However, the added ecosystem benefits of these systems, such as carbon sequestration, have received less attention. In this study, the life cycle net carbon footprint of various vegetated WSUD technologies namely green roofs, rain gardens, bioretention basins, vegetated swales and stormwater ponds, have been reviewed and analysed including their carbon sequestration potential. The carbon footprint of each vegetated WSUD technology was evaluated through the four phases of the life cycle assessment (LCA): material production, construction, operation and maintenance and end-of-life phases. The results of this study show that the initial embodied carbon associated with production, transportation and construction phases is the major contributor to the carbon footprint for most of the vegetated WSUD technologies. Rain gardens are shown to provide the highest carbon sequestration potential which offsets its carbon footprint. Carbon sequestration of bioretention basins, green roofs, vegetated swales and stormwater ponds can mitigate approximately 70{\%}, 68{\%}, 45{\%} and 8{\%} of their carbon footprint respectively. This study demonstrates the significant role of carbon sequestration in mitigating the carbon footprint from the assigned life time of the vegetated WSUD technologies. The results presented in this study will allow designers and policymakers to include the carbon implication in their WSUD strategies.",
keywords = "Carbon footprint, Carbon sequestration, Global warming potential impact, Green stormwater infrastructure, Life cycle assessment, Water sensitive urban design",
author = "Emad Kavehei and Jenkins, {G. A.} and Adame, {M. F.} and C. Lemckert",
year = "2018",
month = "10",
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doi = "10.1016/j.rser.2018.07.002",
language = "English",
volume = "94",
pages = "1179--1191",
journal = "Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews",
issn = "1364-0321",
publisher = "Elsevier Limited",

}

Carbon sequestration potential for mitigating the carbon footprint of green stormwater infrastructure. / Kavehei, Emad; Jenkins, G. A.; Adame, M. F.; Lemckert, C.

In: Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Vol. 94, 01.10.2018, p. 1179-1191.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

TY - JOUR

T1 - Carbon sequestration potential for mitigating the carbon footprint of green stormwater infrastructure

AU - Kavehei, Emad

AU - Jenkins, G. A.

AU - Adame, M. F.

AU - Lemckert, C.

PY - 2018/10/1

Y1 - 2018/10/1

N2 - Green stormwater infrastructure is a common feature of urban cities which is mostly designed for hydrological and water quality purposes. The last decade has seen a rise in research on the environmental impact assessment of vegetated water sensitive urban design (WSUD) technologies. However, the added ecosystem benefits of these systems, such as carbon sequestration, have received less attention. In this study, the life cycle net carbon footprint of various vegetated WSUD technologies namely green roofs, rain gardens, bioretention basins, vegetated swales and stormwater ponds, have been reviewed and analysed including their carbon sequestration potential. The carbon footprint of each vegetated WSUD technology was evaluated through the four phases of the life cycle assessment (LCA): material production, construction, operation and maintenance and end-of-life phases. The results of this study show that the initial embodied carbon associated with production, transportation and construction phases is the major contributor to the carbon footprint for most of the vegetated WSUD technologies. Rain gardens are shown to provide the highest carbon sequestration potential which offsets its carbon footprint. Carbon sequestration of bioretention basins, green roofs, vegetated swales and stormwater ponds can mitigate approximately 70%, 68%, 45% and 8% of their carbon footprint respectively. This study demonstrates the significant role of carbon sequestration in mitigating the carbon footprint from the assigned life time of the vegetated WSUD technologies. The results presented in this study will allow designers and policymakers to include the carbon implication in their WSUD strategies.

AB - Green stormwater infrastructure is a common feature of urban cities which is mostly designed for hydrological and water quality purposes. The last decade has seen a rise in research on the environmental impact assessment of vegetated water sensitive urban design (WSUD) technologies. However, the added ecosystem benefits of these systems, such as carbon sequestration, have received less attention. In this study, the life cycle net carbon footprint of various vegetated WSUD technologies namely green roofs, rain gardens, bioretention basins, vegetated swales and stormwater ponds, have been reviewed and analysed including their carbon sequestration potential. The carbon footprint of each vegetated WSUD technology was evaluated through the four phases of the life cycle assessment (LCA): material production, construction, operation and maintenance and end-of-life phases. The results of this study show that the initial embodied carbon associated with production, transportation and construction phases is the major contributor to the carbon footprint for most of the vegetated WSUD technologies. Rain gardens are shown to provide the highest carbon sequestration potential which offsets its carbon footprint. Carbon sequestration of bioretention basins, green roofs, vegetated swales and stormwater ponds can mitigate approximately 70%, 68%, 45% and 8% of their carbon footprint respectively. This study demonstrates the significant role of carbon sequestration in mitigating the carbon footprint from the assigned life time of the vegetated WSUD technologies. The results presented in this study will allow designers and policymakers to include the carbon implication in their WSUD strategies.

KW - Carbon footprint

KW - Carbon sequestration

KW - Global warming potential impact

KW - Green stormwater infrastructure

KW - Life cycle assessment

KW - Water sensitive urban design

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U2 - 10.1016/j.rser.2018.07.002

DO - 10.1016/j.rser.2018.07.002

M3 - Review article

VL - 94

SP - 1179

EP - 1191

JO - Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews

JF - Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews

SN - 1364-0321

ER -