Environmental and economic assessment of a pilot stormwater infiltration system for flood prevention in Brazil

Anna Petit-Boix, Eva Sevigné-Itoiz, Lorena Avelina Rojas-Gutierrez, Ademir Paceli Barbassa, Alejandro Josa, Joan Rieradevall, Xavier Gabarrell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


© 2015 Elsevier B.V. Green and grey stormwater management infrastructures, such as the filter, swale and infiltration trench (FST), can be used to prevent flooding events. The aim of this paper was to determine the environmental and economic impacts of a pilot FST that was built in São Carlos (Brazil) using Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Life Cycle Costing (LCC). As a result, the components with the greatest contributions to the total impacts of the FST were the infiltration trench and the grass cover. The system has a carbon footprint of 0.13kgCO2eq./m3 of infiltrated stormwater and an eco-efficiency ratio of 0.35kgCO2eq./USD. Moreover, the FST prevented up to 95% of the runoff in the area. Compared to a grey infrastructure, this system is a good solution with respect to PVC stormwater pipes, which require a long pipe length (1070m) and have a shorter lifespan. In contrast, concrete pipes are a better solution, and their impacts are similar to those of the FST. Finally, a sensitivity analysis was conducted to assess the changes in the impacts with the varying lifespan of the system components. Thus, the proper management of the FST can reduce the economic and environmental impacts of the system by increasing its durability.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)194-201
JournalEcological Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2015


  • Best management practices
  • Climate change adaptation
  • Filter, swale and infiltration trench
  • Life cycle assessment
  • Life cycle costing
  • Urban flood


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