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Assessing the key-factors to water-energy-food recycling through bioretention practices in different scales and climates

Grant number: 19/05129-8
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): October 06, 2019
Effective date (End): June 05, 2020
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Sanitary Engineering - Water Resources
Principal Investigator:Eduardo Mario Mendiondo
Grantee:Marina Batalini de Macedo
Supervisor: David Mccarthy
Host Institution: Escola de Engenharia de São Carlos (EESC). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Carlos , SP, Brazil
Research place: Monash University, Australia  
Associated to the scholarship:17/15614-5 - Decentralized urban runoff recycling facility addressing the security of the water-energy-food nexus, BP.DR


Extreme hydrological events, such as droughts and floods, are one of the main causes of disasters worldwide, and it tends to be aggravated by climate and land use changes. As a consequence, risks to the population also increases, once flood events in urban centers become more frequent and the parallel between higher demand and resources scarcity contributes to increase water, energy and food insecurity. In this context, the approach Nexus - water, energy, food emerges, integrating these three resources to turn the society more resilient and increase sustainable cities and communities, aiming to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). Low Impact Development (LID) practices can be used as a tool to achieve more resilient cities and communities, if integrating purposes of runoff retention, water quality improvement and stormwater harvesting, for others then just water reuse. However, there are still some gaps in implementing this system for multiple purposes. Normally, the studies on LID practices address only one of the purposes (only the effects on pollutant removal, or only how contributes to flood control) and sizing and design methodologies focusing on the multiple purposes are still a lack. Moreover, the key-factors affecting the performance of the systems, especially considering the multiple purposes and different climatic conditions, are still poorly understood. Therefore, these project aims to evaluate bioretention systems designed to water-energy-food security operating under different scales and conditions. For such, bioretention system in Brasil and Australia (both subtropical areas but with different rainfall patterns) will be monitored. Through the monitoring data, it will be possible do model the system in terms of runoff retention and water treating and perform sensitivity analysis to identify the key-factors that must be taken in to account during the design and operation. In addition, the results obtained by the monitoring and modeling will be evaluated through metrics that identify the contribution to water and resources recycling, environmental gains and economic saving.

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