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Water 2016, 8(9), 391; doi:10.3390/w8090391

Application of a GIS Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis for the Identification of Intrinsic Suitable Sites in Costa Rica for the Application of Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR) through Spreading Methods

1
Instituto Costarricense de Acueductos y Alcantarillados, San José 10109, Costa Rica
2
Junior Research Group “INOWAS”, Department of Hydrosciences, Technische Universität Dresden, Dresden 01069, Germany
3
Department of Hydrosciences, Technische Universität Dresden, Dresden 01069, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Athanasios Loukas
Received: 31 May 2016 / Revised: 21 July 2016 / Accepted: 30 August 2016 / Published: 9 September 2016
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Abstract

Costa Rica’s annual mean precipitation is above 3300 mm, but this precipitation is not evenly distributed in time or space, producing clear differentiated wet and dry seasons in most of the country. Droughts are also common phenomena which greatly affect the availability of water resources. Managed aquifer recharge (MAR) schemes are being taken into consideration to enhance the underground water storage capacity of the country. The present study constitutes the first assessment for the identification of suitable sites for the implementation of MAR technology spreading methods (SM) in Costa Rica. The suitable sites are identified by means of a geographic information system multi-criteria decision analysis (GIS-MCDA) based on four criteria: hydrogeological aptitude, terrain slope, top soil texture and drainage network density. Four steps are performed in order to identify these sites: problem definition, screening for suitable areas, suitability mapping, and sensitivity analysis. The suitability map was divided in two zones after the screening: suitable and unsuitable, the first zone was further divided in five classes according to the weighted linear combination (WLC) ranking. The results indicate that 61% of the country is suitable for conducting SM. This map is a tool for future implementation of MAR techniques in the country. View Full-Text
Keywords: Costa Rica; managed aquifer recharge; spreading methods; geographic information system multi-criteria decision analysis; suitability mapping; multi-influence factor Costa Rica; managed aquifer recharge; spreading methods; geographic information system multi-criteria decision analysis; suitability mapping; multi-influence factor
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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

Bonilla Valverde, J.P.; Blank, C.; Roidt, M.; Schneider, L.; Stefan, C. Application of a GIS Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis for the Identification of Intrinsic Suitable Sites in Costa Rica for the Application of Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR) through Spreading Methods. Water 2016, 8, 391.

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