ASTA - A method for multi-criteria evaluation of water supply technologies to Assess the most SusTainable Alternative for Copenhagen

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Abstract

Utilities in larger cities have to make complex decisions planning future investments in urban water infrastructure. Changes are driven by physical water stress or political targets for environmental water flows e.g. through the implementation of the European water framework directive. To include these environmental, economic and social sustainability dimensions we introduce a novel multi-criteria assessment method for evaluation of water supply technologies. The method is presented and demonstrated for four alternatives for water supply based on groundwater, rain- & stormwater or seawater developed for augmenting Copenhagen's current groundwater based water supply. To identify the most sustainable technology, we applied rank order distribution weights to a multi-criteria decision analysis to combine the impact assessments of environment, economy and society. The three dimensions were assessed using 1) life-cycle assessment, 2) cost calculations taking operation and maintenance into account and 3) the multi-criteria decision analysis method Analytical hierarchy process. Specialists conducted the life-cycle assessment and cost calculations and the multi-criteria decision analyses were based on a stakeholder workshop gathering stakeholders relevant for the specific case. The workshop reached consensus on three sets of ranked criteria. Each set represented stakeholder perspectives with first priority given to one of the three sustainability dimensions or categories. The workshop reached consensus and when the highest weight was assigned to the environmental dimension of sustainability then the alternative of 'Rain- & stormwater harvesting' was the most sustainable water supply technology; when the highest weight was assigned to the economy or society dimensions then an alternative with 'Groundwater abstraction extended with compensating actions' was considered the most sustainable water supply technology. Across all three sets of ranked weights, the establishment of new well fields is considered the least sustainable alternative.
Original languageEnglish
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Volume618
Pages (from-to)399-408
Number of pages10
ISSN0048-9697
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Keywords

  • Analytical hierarchy process
  • Desalination
  • Economic assessment
  • Freshwater withdrawal impact
  • Groundwater abstraction
  • Life-cycle assessment
  • Multi-criteria decision analysis
  • Rain- and stormwater harvesting
  • Ranked order distribution
  • Water supply

Cite this

@article{2d15bd89dae8477cac5b584db1cd7404,
title = "ASTA - A method for multi-criteria evaluation of water supply technologies to Assess the most SusTainable Alternative for Copenhagen",
abstract = "Utilities in larger cities have to make complex decisions planning future investments in urban water infrastructure. Changes are driven by physical water stress or political targets for environmental water flows e.g. through the implementation of the European water framework directive. To include these environmental, economic and social sustainability dimensions we introduce a novel multi-criteria assessment method for evaluation of water supply technologies. The method is presented and demonstrated for four alternatives for water supply based on groundwater, rain- & stormwater or seawater developed for augmenting Copenhagen's current groundwater based water supply. To identify the most sustainable technology, we applied rank order distribution weights to a multi-criteria decision analysis to combine the impact assessments of environment, economy and society. The three dimensions were assessed using 1) life-cycle assessment, 2) cost calculations taking operation and maintenance into account and 3) the multi-criteria decision analysis method Analytical hierarchy process. Specialists conducted the life-cycle assessment and cost calculations and the multi-criteria decision analyses were based on a stakeholder workshop gathering stakeholders relevant for the specific case. The workshop reached consensus on three sets of ranked criteria. Each set represented stakeholder perspectives with first priority given to one of the three sustainability dimensions or categories. The workshop reached consensus and when the highest weight was assigned to the environmental dimension of sustainability then the alternative of 'Rain- & stormwater harvesting' was the most sustainable water supply technology; when the highest weight was assigned to the economy or society dimensions then an alternative with 'Groundwater abstraction extended with compensating actions' was considered the most sustainable water supply technology. Across all three sets of ranked weights, the establishment of new well fields is considered the least sustainable alternative.",
keywords = "Analytical hierarchy process, Desalination, Economic assessment, Freshwater withdrawal impact, Groundwater abstraction, Life-cycle assessment, Multi-criteria decision analysis, Rain- and stormwater harvesting, Ranked order distribution, Water supply",
author = "Berit Godskesen and Hauschild, {Michael Zwicky} and Hans-J{\o}rgen Albrechtsen and Martin Rygaard",
year = "2018",
doi = "10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.11.018",
language = "English",
volume = "618",
pages = "399--408",
journal = "Science of the Total Environment",
issn = "0048-9697",
publisher = "Elsevier",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - ASTA - A method for multi-criteria evaluation of water supply technologies to Assess the most SusTainable Alternative for Copenhagen

AU - Godskesen, Berit

AU - Hauschild, Michael Zwicky

AU - Albrechtsen, Hans-Jørgen

AU - Rygaard, Martin

PY - 2018

Y1 - 2018

N2 - Utilities in larger cities have to make complex decisions planning future investments in urban water infrastructure. Changes are driven by physical water stress or political targets for environmental water flows e.g. through the implementation of the European water framework directive. To include these environmental, economic and social sustainability dimensions we introduce a novel multi-criteria assessment method for evaluation of water supply technologies. The method is presented and demonstrated for four alternatives for water supply based on groundwater, rain- & stormwater or seawater developed for augmenting Copenhagen's current groundwater based water supply. To identify the most sustainable technology, we applied rank order distribution weights to a multi-criteria decision analysis to combine the impact assessments of environment, economy and society. The three dimensions were assessed using 1) life-cycle assessment, 2) cost calculations taking operation and maintenance into account and 3) the multi-criteria decision analysis method Analytical hierarchy process. Specialists conducted the life-cycle assessment and cost calculations and the multi-criteria decision analyses were based on a stakeholder workshop gathering stakeholders relevant for the specific case. The workshop reached consensus on three sets of ranked criteria. Each set represented stakeholder perspectives with first priority given to one of the three sustainability dimensions or categories. The workshop reached consensus and when the highest weight was assigned to the environmental dimension of sustainability then the alternative of 'Rain- & stormwater harvesting' was the most sustainable water supply technology; when the highest weight was assigned to the economy or society dimensions then an alternative with 'Groundwater abstraction extended with compensating actions' was considered the most sustainable water supply technology. Across all three sets of ranked weights, the establishment of new well fields is considered the least sustainable alternative.

AB - Utilities in larger cities have to make complex decisions planning future investments in urban water infrastructure. Changes are driven by physical water stress or political targets for environmental water flows e.g. through the implementation of the European water framework directive. To include these environmental, economic and social sustainability dimensions we introduce a novel multi-criteria assessment method for evaluation of water supply technologies. The method is presented and demonstrated for four alternatives for water supply based on groundwater, rain- & stormwater or seawater developed for augmenting Copenhagen's current groundwater based water supply. To identify the most sustainable technology, we applied rank order distribution weights to a multi-criteria decision analysis to combine the impact assessments of environment, economy and society. The three dimensions were assessed using 1) life-cycle assessment, 2) cost calculations taking operation and maintenance into account and 3) the multi-criteria decision analysis method Analytical hierarchy process. Specialists conducted the life-cycle assessment and cost calculations and the multi-criteria decision analyses were based on a stakeholder workshop gathering stakeholders relevant for the specific case. The workshop reached consensus on three sets of ranked criteria. Each set represented stakeholder perspectives with first priority given to one of the three sustainability dimensions or categories. The workshop reached consensus and when the highest weight was assigned to the environmental dimension of sustainability then the alternative of 'Rain- & stormwater harvesting' was the most sustainable water supply technology; when the highest weight was assigned to the economy or society dimensions then an alternative with 'Groundwater abstraction extended with compensating actions' was considered the most sustainable water supply technology. Across all three sets of ranked weights, the establishment of new well fields is considered the least sustainable alternative.

KW - Analytical hierarchy process

KW - Desalination

KW - Economic assessment

KW - Freshwater withdrawal impact

KW - Groundwater abstraction

KW - Life-cycle assessment

KW - Multi-criteria decision analysis

KW - Rain- and stormwater harvesting

KW - Ranked order distribution

KW - Water supply

U2 - 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.11.018

DO - 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.11.018

M3 - Journal article

VL - 618

SP - 399

EP - 408

JO - Science of the Total Environment

JF - Science of the Total Environment

SN - 0048-9697

ER -