Selecting the most sustainable wastewater treatment (WWT) technology among possible alternatives is a very complex task because the choice must integrate economic, environmental, and social criteria. Traditionally, several multi-criteria decision-making approaches have been applied, with the most often used being the analytical hierarchical process (AHP). However, AHP allows users to offset poor environmental and/or social performance with low cost. To overcome this limitation, our study examines a choosing-by-advantages (CBA) approach to rank seven WWT technologies for secondary WWT. CBA results were compared with results obtained by using the AHP approach. The rankings of WWT alternatives differed, depending on whether the CBA or AHP approach was used, which highlights the importance of the method used to support decision-making processes, particularly ones that rely on subjective interpretations by experts. This paper uses a holistic perspective to demonstrate the benefits of using the CBA approach to support a decision-making process when a group of experts must come to a consensus in selecting the most suitable WWT technology among several available.
Science of the Total Environment – Elsevier
Published: Jun 1, 2018
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