The British Geological Survey (BGS) created Scotland’s first custom survey and 3D geological model for the town of Forres for that very reason. It’s been developing such 3D models since 2007 and is now applying what it’s learned to Inverness, which since 2000 has been one of the fastest-growing cities in Europe.
Earlier this year, the BGS also released a new digital map of the entire UK that’s aimed at helping planners reduce the risk of urban flooding. The map identifies areas that can act as sustainable drainage systems — or SuDS, as the organization calls them — where rainwater can soak into the ground in the same way as in undeveloped areas.
These drainage systems could include areas like permeable pavements or infiltration basins.
“These SuDS mimic the natural process of rainwater infiltrating into the ground, a process almost entirely removed from our modern ‘concrete jungles,’ ” notes the BGS. “By adopting SuDS, the pressure on underground drainage networks (including sewer systems) is alleviated and so reduces the chance that they will overflow. This decreases the likelihood of floods and pollution impacts on watercourses, caused by overflows to combined sewers that take both sewage and storm water runoff.”