Value of information analysis for groundwater quality monitoring network design Case study: Eocene Aquifer, Palestine
AGU, San Francisco, Calif.
Value of information (VOI) analysis evaluates the benefit of collecting additional information to reduce or eliminate uncertainty in a specific decision-making context. It makes explicit any expected potential losses from errors in decision making due to uncertainty and identifies the “best” information collection strategy as one that leads to the greatest expected net benefit to the decision-maker. This study investigates the willingness to pay for groundwater quality monitoring in the Eocene Aquifer, Palestine, which is an unconfined aquifer located in the northern part of the West Bank. The aquifer is being used by 128,000 Palestinians to fulfill domestic and agricultural demands. The study takes into account the consequences of pollution and the options the decision maker might face. Since nitrate is the major pollutant in the aquifer, the consequences of nitrate pollution were analyzed, which mainly consists of the possibility of methemoglobinemia (blue baby syndrome). In this case, the value of monitoring was compared to the costs of treating for methemoglobinemia or the costs of other options like water treatment, using bottled water or importing water from outside the aquifer. And finally, an optimal monitoring network that takes into account the uncertainties in recharge (climate), aquifer properties (hydraulic conductivity), pollutant chemical reaction (decay factor), and the value of monitoring is designed by utilizing a sparse Bayesian modeling algorithm called a relevance vector machine.
Khader, A. and M. McKee. 2010. Value of information analysis for groundwater quality monitoring network design Case study: Eocene Aquifer, Palestine, Abstract #H21L-04 presented at 2010 Fall Meeting, AGU, San Francisco, Calif., 13-17 Dec. 2010.