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Evaluating the effects of simulated land use changes on peak discharge of a catchment adjoining a road
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Environmental Management and Assessment. (Miljöbedömning och -förvaltning och Biogeofysik)
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE).
Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Ås, Norway.
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Environmental Management and Assessment. (Miljöbedömning och -förvaltning och Biogeofysik)
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(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The consequences of heavy rainfall and other extreme weather events are strongly influenced by land use within watersheds. The tested catchment consists of arable land, forest, living areas, and a creek which crosses a main road at the bottom of the catchment. The theoretical hydrological responses to different land use changes and four different extreme events were quantified by model simulations using MIKE-SHE. Land use composition and configuration was found to affect discharge; clear-cutting on 30% of the catchment area produced a 60% increase in peak discharge and a 10% increase in total runoff during a 50-year summer event. There were only small effects on peak discharge during smaller storms. Reforestation of 60% of basin area was the most effective measure to reduce peak flow, mainly for smaller (2-, 5- and 10-year) storms. Grassed waterways reduced water velocity in the stream and resulted in a 28% reduction in peak flow at the catchment outlet with the same 50-year event. A smaller degree of reforestation (30%) of the basin area was the most efficient measure to decrease total runoff. Hence different measures may be the most efficient for peak discharges and total runoff from the area. The specific effect of land use measures on catchment discharge depends on their spatial distribution and on the size and time of storm events.

Keyword [en]
extreme events, road infrastructure, hydrological model, runoff, land use change, road transportation system, adaptation, operation and maintenance
National Category
Infrastructure Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-51587OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-51587DiVA: diva2:464787
Note

QS 2011

Available from: 2011-12-14 Created: 2011-12-14 Last updated: 2016-03-16Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Adaptation of road drainage structures to climate change
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Adaptation of road drainage structures to climate change
2011 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Climate change is expected to lead to more frequent extreme precipitation events, floods and changes in frost/thawing cycles. The frequency of road closures and other incidents such as flooding, landslides and roads being washed away will probably increase. Stronger demands will be placed on the function of road drainage systems.

The overall aim of this thesis was to produce scientifically well-founded suggestions on adaptation of road drainage systems to climate change involving more frequent floods. The work began by examining current practice for road drainage systems in Sweden and gathering experience from professionals working with various problems concerning surface and subsurface drainage systems. Various hydrological models were then used to calculate the runoff from a catchment adjacent to a road and estimate changes in peak discharge and total runoff resulting from simulated land use measures. According to these survey and hydrological modelling studies, adaptation of road drainage systems to climate change can be grouped into two categories: i) institutional adaptation; and ii) technical adaptation. The main approaches in institutional adaptation are to: i) raise the awareness of expected climate change and its impact on drainage systems in transport administration and relevant stakeholders; ii) include adaptation measures in the existing funding programme of the transport administration; and iii) develop an evaluation tool and action plans concerning existing road drainage systems. Technical adaptation will involve ensuring that road constructions are adapted to more frequent extreme precipitation events and responsive to changes in activities and land use in areas adjacent to roads.

Changes in climate variables will have effects on watershed hydrological responses and consequently influence the amount of runoff reaching roads. There is a great need for tools such as hydrological models to assess impacts on discharge dynamics, including peak flows. Improved communication between road managers and local actors in the forestry and agriculture sectors can be a means to reduce the impacts of, e.g., clear-cutting or badly managed farmland ditches.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2011. xvi, 29 p.
Series
Trita-LWR. LIC, ISSN 1650-8629 ; 2061
National Category
Infrastructure Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-90888 (URN)
Presentation
2011-12-19, V1, Teknikringen 76, Stockholm, 10:30
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Supervisors
Note
QC 20111214Available from: 2012-03-05 Created: 2012-03-02 Last updated: 2012-03-05Bibliographically approved

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