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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13(11), 1167; doi:10.3390/ijerph13111167

Groundwater Vulnerability Assessment of the Pingtung Plain in Southern Taiwan

1
Department of Nursing, Fooyin University, Kaohsiung City 831, Taiwan
2
Department of Leisure and Recreation Management, Kainan University, Taoyuan City 338, Taiwan
3
Graduate Institute of Applied Geology, National Central University, Taoyuan City 320, Taiwan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Yu-Pin Lin
Received: 30 September 2016 / Revised: 9 November 2016 / Accepted: 13 November 2016 / Published: 23 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Health)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [4299 KB, uploaded 23 November 2016]   |  

Abstract

In the Pingtung Plain of southern Taiwan, elevated levels of NO3-N in groundwater have been reported. Therefore, efforts for assessing groundwater vulnerability are required as part of the critical steps to prevent and control groundwater pollution. This study makes a groundwater vulnerability assessment for the Pingtung Plain using an improved overlay and index-based DRASTIC model. The improvement of the DRASTIC model is achieved by reassigning the weighting coefficients of the factors in this model with the help of a discriminant analysis statistical method. The analytical results obtained from the improved DRASTIC model provide a reliable prediction for use in groundwater vulnerability assessment to nitrate pollution and can correctly identify the groundwater protection zones in the Pingtung Plain. Moreover, the results of the sensitivity analysis conducted for the seven parameters in the improved DRASTIC model demonstrate that the aquifer media (A) is the most sensitive factor when the nitrate-N concentration is below 2.5 mg/L. For the cases where the nitrate-N concentration is above 2.5 mg/L, the aquifer media (A) and net recharge (R) are the two most important factors. View Full-Text
Keywords: NO3-N; groundwater; vulnerability; DRASTIC model; discriminant analysis NO3-N; groundwater; vulnerability; DRASTIC model; discriminant analysis
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Liang, C.-P.; Jang, C.-S.; Liang, C.-W.; Chen, J.-S. Groundwater Vulnerability Assessment of the Pingtung Plain in Southern Taiwan. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13, 1167.

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