Arabian Journal for Science and Engineering

, Volume 42, Issue 6, pp 2487–2499 | Cite as

A GIS-Based Integrated Fuzzy Logic and Analytic Hierarchy Process Model for Assessing Water-Harvesting Zones in Northeastern Maysan Governorate, Iraq

  • Alaa M. Al-AbadiEmail author
  • Shamsuddin Shahid
  • Hussein B. Ghalib
  • Amna M. Handhal
Research Article - Earth Sciences


Identifying potential sites for water harvesting (WH) is a crucial task for efficient water resources management in arid regions. In response, this paper proposes a geographical information system-based model that combines fuzzy logic and analytic hierarchy process (AHP) to delineate suitable areas for constructing WH structures in arid southern Iraq. Based on a literature review and available data, five influential factors were selected to develop the model: hydrological soil group, land cover, surface runoff depth, slope, and distance to an intermittent river. A fuzzy logic-based approach was used to standardize the factors, and AHP was used to derive weights. The total score for land suitability was obtained from a linear aggregation of the products of fuzzy standard criteria and AHP-derived weights. The WH suitability levels obtained were classified into five different classes: unsuitable, poor, moderate, good, and excellent. The study revealed that 393 \(\hbox {km}^{2}\) (18% of the area) is unsuitable or poor, 538 \(\hbox {km}^{2}\) (26%) is moderately suitable, and 1167 \(\hbox {km}^{2}\) (56%) is good or excellent for WH in the study area. Field data revealed that the only existing WH dam in the area is situated within an excellent WH-suitable zone, which indicates the capability of the developed model to identify areas suitable for different WH structures.


Water harvesting Fuzzy logic Analytic hierarchy process Geographical information system Iraq 


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Copyright information

© King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Geology, College of ScienceUniversity of BasraBasraIraq
  2. 2.Faculty of Civil EngineeringUniversiti Teknologi MalaysiaJohor BahruMalaysia

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