Water Quality: Cost Benefits of Irreducibles

by Ralph Stone, (F.ASCE), Pres.; Ralph Stone & Co., Inc., Los Angeles, CA; and Chmn., Sewerage and Sewage Treatment Committee,
William Garber, (F.ASCE), Head; Editorial Group,
Helen Friedland, Sr. Staff Economist; Ralph Stone & Co., Inc., Engineers, Los Angeles, CA,

Serial Information: Journal of the Sanitary Engineering Division, 1970, Vol. 96, Issue 3, Pg. 691-697

Document Type: Journal Paper


A questionnaire designed by the ASCE Committee on Sewerage and Sewage Treatment was included in a 1969 Sanitary Engineering Division Newsletter. Approximately 350 Division members (20%) responded. They gave value judgment ratings (range of 1 to 10) for social and economic benefits of: (1) alternative beneficial uses of water resources; and (2) the value of research and development work to engineering practice and the environment. Simple algorithmic analysis was applied to the data which was weighted and normalized. The study indicated that it was possible to quantify, to a degree, qualitative information, that sanitary engineers are aware of the importance of social values, and that although existing R and D work is making a significant contribution, its technological level can be greatly improved.

Subject Headings: Water quality | Benefit cost ratios | Value engineering | Social factors | Water resources | Sewers | Sewage | Sanitary engineering

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