Stormwater runoff has been a major issue for urbanised areas. The traditional response to tackle stormwater flooding and pollution is to construct a network of well-connected drainage to direct the runoff outside the city boundaries. However, such an approach shifts the problems downstream without restoring natural processes that are essential for achieving healthy ecosystems.
This paper looks at the stormwater decision-making challenges from a Green Infrastructure perspective, with a focus on the interconnected nature of urban infrastructure system. A number of examples from around the world together with local examples have been studied to better understand the knowledge gaps that have been hindering our progress toward a widespread and systematic implementation of GI.
The institutional barriers, including path dependence and lack of collaborative decision-making were found to play a key role in defining the way forward. In addition, the true value of water is often neglected, leading to decisions being made largely based on economic assessments considering the market price of water. It is essential that further research programmes investigate developing effective frameworks for capturing and implementing the wider benefits of GI, including social, environmental and cultural ones.