SUSTAIN Applications for Modeling and Mapping Green Infrastructure

Uzair (Sam) Shamsi and John Schombert, and Lawrence J. Lennon


Stormwater Low Impact Development / Green Infrastructure (LID/GI) controls are sustainable development practices designed to capture surface runoff using some combination of detention, infiltration, and evapotranspiration. As a means to reduce volume entering a stormwater or wastewater system and reduce its peak flows, LID/GI can be applied through source controls to infiltrate, evapotranspirate, or store stormwater runoff for beneficial uses. These approaches prevent stormwater runoff from entering a sewer system and reduce overflows. In addition, many LID/GI approaches can be included in adaptive management strategies designed to be resilient to such system changing factors as population growth and climate change. LID/GI implementation planning requires mapping and modeling of existing gray infrastructure and green retrofits for stormwater management.

EPA's System for Urban Stormwater Treatment and Analysis INtegration (SUSTAIN) software program is a GIS-based decision support system to facilitate selection and placement of LID/GI facilities at strategic locations in urban watersheds. SUSTAIN is designed as an integrated mapping-modeling package to support GIS mapping and linkage to other related models such as detailed sewer system models (e.g., SWMM) or receiving water models of affected rivers. Where existing sewer and watershed models are available, SUSTAIN can be used to predict the most inexpensive GI practices that will result in reduced overflow volumes and frequency. This paper will water temperature, wind speed, wind direction, dry temperature, precipitation, incident short-wave solar radiation, and cloud factor. The constructed models were utilized to examine multiple discharge locations with best, worst, and typical days identified to compare spatial distribution of water temperature and ice thickness for different WRC locations. The results were utilized in the EA process to assist in the selection of the optimal location for the WRC discharge.

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