Reservoir operation under accidental MTBE pollution: A graph-based conflict resolution framework considering spatial-temporal-quantitative uncertainties

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Hydrology, 2022, 605
Issue Date:
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Given the hazardous effects of sudden dam reservoir contamination — as might occur upon the intrusion of the fuel additive methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE) — the contaminant's effect on the quality of allocated waters requires careful study. Employed to determine optimal reservoir operational rules in the case of sudden MTBE pollution, a risk-based simulation–optimization model was developed to simultaneously minimize unsatisfied water demand, the risk of violations of water quality standards, and the reservoir recovery time. Risks were assessed by considering various often-neglected pollution scenarios as a combination of location, quantity, and the season of pollution intrusion. The appropriateness of operational rules proved to depend upon thermal conditions and MTBE intrusion properties, confirming the necessity of considering location-quantity-season uncertainties. Social and regional conditions also occupied a dominant role in determining the level of satisfaction achieved under different water allocation strategies. Accordingly, by considering environmental conditions and local rules, a graph model for conflict resolution was established and used to reach a set of compromise operational rules. The developed framework could serve as a guide for water utilities to determine efficient reservoir operational rules after a sudden contaminant intrusion.
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