An ecosystem services approach: how does rainfall variation influence habitat provision in ponds?

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Abstract

Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SUDS) are soft engineering solutions for urban pollution, flood risk management with the intention to mimic natural systems while maintaining hydraulic features (such as flow control). Their design is based on the SUDS triangle which incorporates water quality, water quantity, and amenity and biodiversity components. Until recently, the main focus was on diffuse pollution and how SUDS offered a unique, and feasible, solution from urban and peri-urban water courses. However, with the looming threat of climate change, the research goal has widened to include the influence of flooding and how these solutions exist to minimise the associated impacts from localised floods. In terms of amenity, and biodiversity, little research has been completed to quantify the wider benefits with respect to three main pillars of sustainability: economic, social and environmental factors. Ecosystem Services refer to the enduser benefits which may be derived from the natural environment. Few studies to date assess the links between Ecosystem Services and SUDS- although conceptual studies (Jose et al., 2015; Scholz et al., 2013;Lundy and Wade, 2011) exist, none have assigned a monetary value to these services.It is therefore the intention of this paper to make the connection between aquatic habitats (ponds) and suggest feasible methods to quantify the wider Ecosystem benefits and services. Habitat provision is of strong importance for environmental benefits. It is therefore the focus of this paper to make the connection between aquatic habitats (ponds) and the amenity and biodiversity functions offered. This will be achieved by investigating whether there is a statistically significant association between two variables (pond area, total rainfall) and ASPT (average score per taxon).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the Infrastructure and Environment Scotland 3rd Postgraduate Conference
Place of PublicationEdinburgh
PublisherHeriot-Watt University
Pages65-70
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9780956595140
Publication statusPublished - 9 Dec 2015

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