Potential and Quantification of Street Sweeping Pollutant Reductions towards addressing TMDL WLAs for MS4 Compliance
Hixon, Lee Franklin
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Municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) permittees face costly obligations to reduce pollutant loadings needed to achieve waste load allocations (WLAs) and meet total maximum daily loads (TMDLs). Street sweeping is potentially an effective BMP since streets exist throughout urban watersheds, often are directly connected to the storm sewer, and are found to contain an abundance of contaminants. Although pollutant removal from street sweeping has been evaluated for decades, an understanding of the impact on water quality in receiving streams is elusive. Due to numerous variables, the large number of samples necessary to measure impact in receiving streams may never be obtained. In response, modeled pollutant removal efficiencies based on frequency of sweeping have been recommended to the Chesapeake Bay Program, but these results are suspect. Alternatively, the amount of swept material has emerged as a method to quantify reductions. A sampling study was conducted to measure pollutants in swept material. The study identified the fraction of material susceptible to transport in runoff based on timing of sweeping in relation to runoff events. Based on observed pollutant concentration associations with particle size, the study results in estimates of pollutant concentrations for the fraction of material susceptible to downstream transport, dependent on duration since the last rainfall and type of surface swept, whether the area is a streets or a parking lot. Pollutant loadings and required reductions to achieve the Chesapeake Bay WLAs for various land use sample areas are computed for an average year. Modeled removal efficiencies and results from the sampling study were employed to assess impacts from street sweeping. Modeled efficiencies predict significantly lower impact than measurements of pollutants susceptible to runoff in swept material. Modeled loadings are inconsistent with measurements of swept materials and the rigorous sweeping frequency required for modeled removal efficiency credit appears to be unnecessary.
- Doctoral Dissertations