Evaluating the Environmental Impacts of Water Distribution Systems by Using EIO-LCA-Based Multiobjective Optimization

by L. M. Herstein, Graduate Student; Dept. of Civil Engineering, Univ. of Toronto, Toronto, ON M56 1A4, Canada; formerly, Graduate Student, Dept. of Civil Engineering, Queen's Univ., Kingston, ON K7L 3N6, Canada., lesley.herstein@utoronto.ca,
Y. R. Filion, Assistant Professor; Dept. of Civil Engineering, Queen's Univ., Kingston, ON K7L 3N6, Canada., yves.filion@civil.queensu.ca,
K. R. Hall, Vice President of Research; Univ. of Guelph, Guelph, ON N1G 2W1, Canada., kehall@uoguelph.ca,


Serial Information: Issue 2, Pg. 162-172


Document Type: Journal Paper

Abstract: Climate change has made environmental impact a factor of growing importance in decision making for municipalities. Increasingly, the environmental impacts of expanding and operating a water distribution system (WDS) are considered alongside the cost and hydraulic design. This paper presents a nondominated sorting genetic algorithm (NSGA-II) that minimizes capital costs, annual pumping energy use, and environmental impacts in WDS design that adheres to hydraulic constraints. A previously developed environmental impact (EI) index is included in the environmental objective function of the optimization program. The EI index normalizes and aggregates multiple environmental measures evaluated with an economic input-output life-cycle assessment (EIO-LCA) model. The EIO-LCA-based NSGA-II was applied to the Anytown network. Annual pumping energy use was found to dominate the EI index while capital cost and the EI index were inversely related, and the annual pumping energy use and the EI index followed a near linear relationship. The location and shape of the Pareto fronts were sensitive to demand and roughness coefficient (C-factor) adjustments with greater sensitivity observed for changes in demand than changes in the C-factor.

Subject Headings: Water supply systems | Environmental issues | Hydraulic design | Energy consumption | Sustainable development | Pumps | Assets | Climate change |

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