Green Walls Could Buffer Flash Flooding in Cities

Sourced from Phys.org

Simulations reveal that green walls filled with coconut peat could absorb storm water running off buildings, mitigating flash floods.

Vertical plant-containing structures attached to the sides of buildings can boost the natural appeal of cities, but that's not their only attraction. Using a storm water modelling tool, engineers in Malaysia are exploring whether these so-called green walls can also help buffer roof run-off to combat flash flooding.

The team, based at the University of Malaysia Sarawak and supported by the Department of Irrigation and Drainage Malaysia, is focusing on a modular system filled with coconut peat.

This artificial soil, which can be obtained by processing readily available coconut husks, has proven good for gardening. However, its ability to control run-off is unknown. In the lab, the group measured key properties of the coconut-based soil including porosity and the speed of water infiltration, and inputted these values into the simulation.

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