Landfill Risk Assessment on Groundwater Based on Vulnerability and Pollution Index

Bo Zhang, Guoxiu Li, Pin Cheng, Tian Chyi Jim Yeh, Mei Hong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Many existing risk assessment methodologies heavily rely on complex physical models and probabilistic concepts, which are difficult to use and not suitable for a first-cut analysis. Meanwhile, most groundwater pollution risk assessment indices generally are solely based on groundwater vulnerability and ignore the consideration of the hazard of pollution source. In this paper, we developed a simple groundwater pollution risk index approach, which can be easily utilized in many developing countries. The approach is developed according to vulnerability of the aquifers and pollution source index, which is based on landfill treatment technology. Applications of this risk index approach to 22 formal landfill sites in Beijing show that 1, 2, 4, 10, 5 landfill sites can be classified as of high, medium high, medium, medium low, low risk level respectively. These results demonstrate that vulnerability assessment alone is not sufficient to groundwater pollution risk assessment. This simple risk assessment method is most suitable for a comparative assessment of a large number of pollution sources at a regional scale due to its lower cost and easy operability. It also allows prioritizes landfills for reclamation interventions and recommendation of required actions such that an efficient management of landfills could be accomplished.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1465-1480
Number of pages16
JournalWater Resources Management
Issue number4
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016


  • Groundwater risk assessment
  • Landfill
  • Pollution
  • Vulnerability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology


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