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Water Sensitive Cities and Commons: using recycled water for maintenance irrigation in order for green-blue infrastructure planting schemes to be more reliably sustained

Project Description

Communities with existing urban water infrastructure face barriers to engagement between the urban community and the urban water environment; for example in the case of streams culverted underneath districts or unhealthy, overgrown feeder streams and ponds that seem to have no social role or function. The water system may be an inconvenient barrier to travel, or may be seen as thermally irrelevant to human systems and health, or it may be contaminated, or flood into surrounding systems. In these cases it is not seen as having relevance as an essential asset for communities, for maintaining healthy water for amenity, engagement, recreation and other uses. The proposition, based upon our previous Climate-KIC research outcomes is that by using recycled water (treated greywater) for maintenance irrigation, green-blue infrastructure planting schemes will be more reliably sustained, and green-blue networks will have a wider reach and a wider impact. Recycled water from showers, handbasins and baths (raw greywater) is utilised as a key contributor to the hydrological cycle. The proposition will be tested using soil sampling and analysis, monitoring and assessment of hydrological characteristics and assessments of plant growth under a number of different sets of urban conditions. The research aspects relating to local urban engagment in the design, management of modified green infrastructures for enhancing the urban commons, and engaging urban communities for demonstrating the instruments of success for water sensitive cities asnd commons.

Funding Notes

"Require degree-level science, (environmental chemistry and soil science etc) and architecture/humanities


"Smith M.J., Hyde. K., (2017). Monitoring Drainage Water Quality During Green Roof Irrigation Trials Using Synthetic Greywater, British Journal of Environment and Climate Change, 2017.
Urban Pollution; ed. Prof Sue Charlesworth, publication expected in 2018. (More refs available)"

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