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Gewählte Publikation:

Boumaiza, L; Walter, J; Chesnaux, R; Brindha, K; Elango, L; Rouleau, A; Wachniew, P; Stumpp, C.
(2021): An operational methodology for determining relevant DRASTIC factors and their relative weights in the assessment of aquifer vulnerability to contamination
ENVIRON EARTH SCI. 2021; 80(7), 281 FullText FullText_BOKU

The DRASTIC index used to assess the vulnerability of aquifers to contamination, has been subject to various adjustments to improve its reliability. These adjustments include adding and/or eliminating certain aquifer factors and modifying the factor weights. Nonetheless, there is no consensus about which factors, or their respective weights, are most important for assessing aquifer vulnerability. In the present study, we propose an operational methodology that: (1) identifies the relevant factors for assessing aquifer vulnerability to contamination; and (2) determines the relative importance of the selected factors. We applied this approach to a large data set of granular aquifers from a region in Canada, which includes information for DRASTIC factors, combined with groundwater quality and land-use data. We found that for our study region, topography (terrain-slope) is an irrelevant factor for assessing the vulnerability of aquifers to contamination. On the other hand, the relevant factors ranked according to their relative importance (from highest to lowest), are (1) water table depth; (2) hydraulic conductivity; (3) characteristics of vadose zone materials; and (4) recharge. Our approach can serve as an initial step for identifying the relevant aquifer factors when assessing aquifer vulnerability and determining the relative importance of the relevant factors to validate weights attributed to these factors. Our methodology can help adapt index-based methods of aquifer vulnerability assessment to a range of study regions.
Autor*innen der BOKU Wien:
Stumpp Christine
BOKU Gendermonitor:

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Water quality index

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