The links between transportation and material stocks: GIS modelling of roads in Grenada

Authors: Lingfei Ye*, University of Waterloo, Tomer Fishman, Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya, Su-Yin Tan, University of Waterloo, Simron Singh, University of Waterloo, John Telesford, T.A. Marryshow Community College
Topics: Geographic Information Science and Systems, Planning Geography, Sustainability Science
Keywords: Material Stock Analysis (MSA), road stock, GIS, bottom-up, socio-economic metabolism, Small Island Developing State (SIDS)
Session Type: Virtual Paper
Day: 4/7/2021
Start / End Time: 3:05 PM / 4:20 PM
Room: Virtual 12
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Increasing urbanization has led to greater “material stock” accumulation within built environments, which in turn, has exerted more pressure on natural resources. Sustainable extraction, use, and disposal of natural resources necessitate the quantification of material stocks that exist within socio-economic systems. Transportation is an important component of civil infrastructure and is in itself an indicator of economic growth. However, few Material Stock Analyses (MSA) have considered road networks in their estimates, which is especially problematic for developing countries, where new roads are continuously being constructed to facilitate the growth of different industries. This study presents a bottom-up approach for quantifying and modelling in-use road stocks in Grenada, a Small Island Developing State (SIDS) in the Caribbean. By employing GIS and spatial datasets, a material stocks database was developed to capture and assess how stocks are spatially distributed on the island nation. Results of this study show that materials stocked in roads were estimated at 6,655 kilo tonnes, which were about one-half of that accumulated in buildings. A large accumulation of road stocks was spatially distributed along coastline areas, which are vulnerable to climate change. This study details a methodology and results that can further aid SIDS nations in better assessing resource appropriation and evaluating their adaptive capacity to climate change. This case study serves as a pilot for assessing a novel methodology for estimating road material stocks in the context of SIDS. It will also allow to evaluate the relationship between transportation, economic activity, and sustainable development on island systems.

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