Mitigating polluted runoff from industrial estates by suds retrofits: Case studies of problems and solutions co-designed with a participatory approach

Vladimir Krivtsov*, Brian J. D’Arcy, Alejandro Escribano Sevilla, Scott Arthur, Chris Semple

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
103 Downloads (Pure)


Contaminated runoff from industrial estates is a significant cause of poor quality in receiving watercourses. Pollution risk begins at each of the industrial premises, presenting different environmental risks which require individual treatment and contingency plans. This is best achieved using SUDS technology, which adds green infrastructure with passive drainage features to the existing drainage and treatment systems, designed to capture the pollutants present in runoff at source on individual sites, for conveyance and on a regional basis serving the whole estate. Here, we develop a multistage investigative framework structured to facilitate the search for relevant solutions and optimization of their design. This paper presents the results of the awareness survey, identifies barriers and opportunities, and reports on case studies dealing with potential SUDS retrofits at industrial facilities, assessing the existing control measures and the scope for new ones with the aim of improving pollution management. The feasibility of SUDS components was assessed with respect to their functional characteristics, economic costs, and logistical constraints. Lack of knowledge related to SUDS and pollution prevention legislation was identified as the major barrier to retrofits, which should be addressed through educational measures. Although comprehensive SUDS retrofits could be prohibitive in cost for small and medium-sized companies, partial and affordable retrofit solutions can be easily implemented to achieve the environmental benefits sought. In addition to the improvements in water quality and alleviation of flood risk, the introduction of Blue-Green Infrastructure will bring about further multiple benefits related to such ecosystem services as the amelioration of the local climate, reduction of noise, improvements in air quality, enhancement of the local biodiversity, and positive effects for the human well-being and mental health.

Original languageEnglish
Article number12357
Issue number22
Publication statusPublished - 9 Nov 2021


  • BGI
  • Contingency planning
  • Industrial design
  • Optimization
  • Resilience
  • Sustainable drainage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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