Coordinated management of combined sewer overflows by means of environmental decision support systems

Sci Total Environ. 2016 Apr 15;550:256-264. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.01.076. Epub 2016 Jan 25.


During heavy rainfall, the capacity of sewer systems and wastewater treatment plants may be surcharged producing uncontrolled wastewater discharges and a depletion of the environmental quality. Therefore there is a need of advanced management tools to tackle with these complex problems. In this paper an environmental decision support system (EDSS), based on the integration of mathematical modeling and knowledge-based systems, has been developed for the coordinated management of urban wastewater systems (UWS) to control and minimize uncontrolled wastewater spills. Effectiveness of the EDSS has been tested in a specially designed virtual UWS, including two sewers systems, two WWTP and one river subjected to typical Mediterranean rain conditions. Results show that sewer systems, retention tanks and wastewater treatment plants improve their performance under wet weather conditions and that EDSS can be very effective tools to improve the management and prevent the system from possible uncontrolled wastewater discharges.

Keywords: Combined sewer overflows; Coordinated management; Environmental decision support systems; Urban wastewater systems.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't