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Water 2015, 7(10), 5503-5524; doi:10.3390/w7105503

Conditional Order-m Efficiency of Wastewater Treatment Plants: The Role of Environmental Factors

Department of Applied Economic Analysis, University of Alicante, Ctra. San Vicente del Raspeig s/n, San Vicente del Raspeig, Alicante 03080, Spain
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Academic Editor: Miklas Scholz
Received: 3 August 2015 / Revised: 23 September 2015 / Accepted: 29 September 2015 / Published: 15 October 2015
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Abstract

The growing economic and environmental importance of managing water resources at a global level also entails greater efforts and interest in improving the functioning and efficiency of the increasingly more numerous wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs). In this context, this study analyzes the efficiency of a uniform sample of plants of this type located in the region of Valencia (Spain). The type of efficiency measure used for this (conditional order-m efficiency) allows continuous and discrete contextual variables to be directly involved in the analysis and enables the assessment of their statistical significance and effect (positive or negative). The main findings of the study showed that the quality of the influent water and also the size and age of the plants had a significant influence on their efficiency levels. In particular, as regards the effect of such variables, the findings pointed to the existence of an inverse relationship between the quality of the influent water and the efficiency of the WWTPs. Also, a lower annual volume of treated water and more modern installations showed a positive influence. Additionally, the average efficiency levels observed turned out to be higher than those reported in previous studies. View Full-Text
Keywords: conditional efficiency; exogenous variables; free disposal hull (FDH); order-m; robust estimation; wastewater conditional efficiency; exogenous variables; free disposal hull (FDH); order-m; robust estimation; wastewater
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

Fuentes, R.; Torregrosa, T.; Ballenilla, E. Conditional Order-m Efficiency of Wastewater Treatment Plants: The Role of Environmental Factors. Water 2015, 7, 5503-5524.

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