A Transport cost-based optimization for arable land application of municipal sludge in Ankara

Görgüner, Merve
The agricultural use of sewage sludge is an alternative route for sewage sludge disposal which may also help to improve soil fertility by providing organic matter and nutrients. Yet, care should be taken to minimize soil contamination due to some constituents in sludge such as heavy metals, organic contaminants and pathogens. One approach may be selection of suitable lands. This study focuses on the determination of suitable arable lands for sewage sludge application on land in Ankara through a cost-based optimization model. In this model, it is aimed to minimize the transportation costs related to land application of municipal sewage sludge between 2013 and 2022. Lands suitable for sludge application were determined through spatial analysis using ArcGIS program. In the study, 75% of the total non-irrigated arable lands in Ankara were eliminated due to their non-conformity to land applications. According to results of optimization model developed with linear programming, 17.1% of the total suitable non-irrigated arable lands received sewage sludge. The minimum, maximum and average distances to these lands for which sludge application was feasible in a period of 10 years were 3.2, 71.6, and 50.7 km, respectively. The average transportation costs for transport of sewage sludge for 10 years were 184,983, 168,513, and 135,922 TL/yr when truck capacities of 10, 16 and 24 tonnes, respectively, were used. As the truck capacity increased, the total transportation costs decreased due to decreased numbers of round-trips required to transport sewage sludge to non-irrigated arable lands.


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Citation Formats
M. Görgüner, “A Transport cost-based optimization for arable land application of municipal sludge in Ankara,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2013.