Development of Waste Load Allocation Strategiesin Rivers Using Social Choice Approach

Document Type : Research Paper


1 MSc Student of Water Resources Engineering, Dept. of Civil Engineering, Isfahan University of Technology, Isfahan

2 Assist. Prof. of Water Resources Engineering, Dept. of Civil Engineering, Isfahan University of Technology, Isfahan


In this paper, river water quality management was implemented to minimize the costs of environmental protection and to meet the environmental water quality requirements. For this purpose, the social choice approach was adopted to consider the role of wastewater dischargers in the decision-making process and to increase the applicability of the proposed waste load allocation programs. Firstly, different wastewater treatment scenarios were identified for each water pollutant and treatment alternatives which are combinations of treatment scenarios were defined. For each treatment alternative, penalties due to violations of river water quality standards were then calculated using the qualitative simulation model (Qual2kw) and each discharger was assumed to prioritize the treatment alternatives based on the treatment costs and the fines defined for water quality standard violations. Finally, using different social choice methods, the most preferred treatment alternative was identified. In order to reduce costs and to encourage dischargers to participate in river water quality protection programs, the most preferred treatment alternative was exchanged among the dischargers as an initial discharge permit using the extended trading-ratio system (ETRS). The results of applying the proposed model to a case study, the Zarjub River located in north Iran, showed the model’s efficiency in developing river waste load allocation strategies.


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