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Open AccessArticle

GIS-Based Site Selection for Check Dams in Watersheds: Considering Geomorphometric and Topo-Hydrological Factors

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Soil Conservation and Watershed Management Research Department, Kurdistan Agricultural and Natural Resources Research and Education Center, AREEO, Sanandaj 6616936311, Iran
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Department of Physical Geography and Bolin Centre for Climate Research, Stockholm University, SE-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
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Faculty of Natural Resources, University of Tehran, Karaj 31587-77871, Iran
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Department of Geography, University of Tartu, Vanemuise St. 46, 51003 Tartu, Estonia
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Department of Watershed Management, Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Lorestan University, Khorramabad 68151-44316, Iran
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Department of Watershed Management, Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Gorgan 4918943464, Iran
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Geographic Information Science Research Group, Ton Duc Thang University, Ho Chi Minh City 70000, Vietnam
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Faculty of Environment and Labour Safety, Ton Duc Thang University, Ho Chi Minh City 70000, Vietnam
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2019, 11(20), 5639; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11205639
Received: 18 July 2019 / Revised: 25 September 2019 / Accepted: 10 October 2019 / Published: 13 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Watershed Modelling and Management for Sustainability)
Check dams are widely used watershed management measures for reducing flood peak discharge and sediment transport, and increasing lag time and groundwater recharge throughout the world. However, identifying the best suitable sites for check dams within the stream networks of various watersheds remains challenging. This study aimed to develop an open-source software with user-friendly interface for screening the stream network possibilities and identifying and guiding the selection of suitable sites for check dams within watersheds. In this developed site selection software (SSS), multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) was integrated into geographic information systems (GIS), which allowed for numerous spatial data of the multiple criteria to be relatively simply and visually processed. Different geomorphometric and topo-hydrological factors were considered and accounted for to enhance the SSS identification of the best locations for check dams. The factors included topographic wetness index (TWI), terrain ruggedness index (TRI), topographic position index (TPI), sediment transport index (STI), stream power index (SPI), slope, drainage density (DD), and stream order (SO). The site identification performance of the SSS was assessed using the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve method, with results for the case study example of the Poldokhtar watershed in Iran showing excellent performance and identifying 327 potential sites for efficient check dam construction in this watershed. The SSS tool is not site-specific but is rather general, adaptive, and comprehensive, such that it can and should be further applied and tested across different watersheds and parts of the world. View Full-Text
Keywords: check dams; site selection; site prioritization; watershed management; decision support system; GIS; poldokhtar watershed check dams; site selection; site prioritization; watershed management; decision support system; GIS; poldokhtar watershed
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Rahmati, O.; Kalantari, Z.; Samadi, M.; Uuemaa, E.; Moghaddam, D.D.; Nalivan, O.A.; Destouni, G.; Tien Bui, D. GIS-Based Site Selection for Check Dams in Watersheds: Considering Geomorphometric and Topo-Hydrological Factors. Sustainability 2019, 11, 5639.

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