A technical model for reclaimed water reuse in agricultural irrigation: a case study in Kordkuy, Iran

  • Sepideh Ansari
  • Javad AlaviEmail author
  • Mohammad Ghafoori
Original Article


This study aims at developing a systematic and holistic logical decision-making model to assess technical feasibility of reclaimed water reuse in agriculture. The hypothesis of algorithm was based on the basic conditions recommended by Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations which are required to make irrigated farming a success. The model innovatively integrates technical aspects by using a hierarchical modular structure consisting of three modules to tackle an unstructured assessment process. Reusability analysis module is concerned with determining the restrictions imposed on effluent quality, selection of suitable types of crops as well as the best available irrigation method. In order to select crops, a framework of potential restrictions was developed to match effluent, soil and types of crops, simultaneously, with a high level of intricacy as well as adaptability to any cases. Supply–demand analysis module provides an estimation of reuse potential in terms of quantity and irrigated area based on the water requirements of selected crops and the volume of produced treated wastewater. Module of field management practices aims at controlling adverse impacts of prolonged irrigation by effluent on the environment. The compatibility with different guidelines and regulations, the simplicity achieved by a series of logical steps and the integration of modules are the main features of the algorithm. To test algorithm robustness, it was successfully applied in Kordkuy, Iran. As a result of model performance, the water reuse scheme can annually save up to 718,560 m3 of freshwater by planting soybean and rapeseed as the most suitable crops in the region.


Agriculture irrigation Treated wastewater reuse Technical features Potential restrictions Crop water requirement Field management 



This project was funded by Golestan Regional Water Company as part of the program “Treated Wastewater Reuse Plans in Golestan Province, Iran”. The authors gratefully acknowledge Pazhouhab Shargh Consulting Engineers Company for their enthusiastic support during the data collection period, sampling and water–soil quality analysis. Also the comments and assistance given by Emad Mahjoobi, Mohammad Ali Ghanadzadeh and Navid Taheri Heravi are much appreciated.


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Copyright information

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

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sepideh Ansari
    • 1
  • Javad Alavi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Mohammad Ghafoori
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Environmental Sciences and EngineeringKheradgarayan Motahhar Institute of Higher EducationMashhadIran
  2. 2.Department of Geology, Faculty of ScienceFerdowsi University of MashhadMashhadIran

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