Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 25, Issue 16, pp 15844–15861 | Cite as

Screening of groundwater remedial alternatives for brownfield sites: a comprehensive method integrated MCDA with numerical simulation

  • Wei Li
  • Min Zhang
  • Mingyu Wang
  • Zhantao Han
  • Jiankai Liu
  • Zhezhou Chen
  • Bo Liu
  • Yan Yan
  • Zhu Liu
Research Article


Brownfield sites pollution and remediation is an urgent environmental issue worldwide. The screening and assessment of remedial alternatives is especially complex owing to its multiple criteria that involves technique, economy, and policy. To help the decision-makers selecting the remedial alternatives efficiently, the criteria framework conducted by the U.S. EPA is improved and a comprehensive method that integrates multiple criteria decision analysis (MCDA) with numerical simulation is conducted in this paper. The criteria framework is modified and classified into three categories: qualitative, semi-quantitative, and quantitative criteria, MCDA method, AHP-PROMETHEE (analytical hierarchy process-preference ranking organization method for enrichment evaluation) is used to determine the priority ranking of the remedial alternatives and the solute transport simulation is conducted to assess the remedial efficiency. A case study was present to demonstrate the screening method in a brownfield site in Cangzhou, northern China. The results show that the systematic method provides a reliable way to quantify the priority of the remedial alternatives.


Brownfield sites Groundwater remediation AHP-PROMETHEE Numerical simulation 



The authors would greatly thank Prof. Bertrand Mareschal (Université Libre de Bruxelles) who provides the Visual PROMETHEE (academic edition), and the authors are grateful to the editors and the anonymous reviewers for their constructive comments and suggested revisions.

Role of the funding source

This work was financially supported by the National Environmental Protection Public Welfare Industry Targeted Research Fund, People’s Republic of China (NO.201309003) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) (NO. 41702276).

Supplementary material

11356_2018_1721_MOESM1_ESM.docx (46 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 31 kb)


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© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Shenzhen Academy of Environmental SciencesShenzhenChina
  2. 2.College of Resources and EnvironmentUniversity of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  3. 3.Institute of Hydrogeology and Environmental GeologyChinese Academy of Geological SciencesHebeiChina
  4. 4.Beijing Institute of Hydrogeology and Engineering GeologyBeijingChina
  5. 5.School of EnvironmentTsinghua UniversityBeijingChina
  6. 6.College of Environmental Science and EngineeringLiaoning Technical UniversityLiaoningChina

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