What is it about?

Natural and nonnatural disasters are happening more often. This can affect critical infrastructures such as water distribution networks (WDNs). To manage the impact, experts are studying physical and organizational plans. These plans can support the design and working of WDNs. In this paper, scientists propose a new resilience index (R). The index is useful in assessing the ability of WDNs to retain their function following an extreme event. To test the application of R, they selected a small town in the south of Italy. The assessment was performed for varying disruptive scenarios and restoration plans.

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Why is it important?

The unique feature of the R index lies in combining the technical, environmental, and social dimensions of resilience. It is a product of three indices. First, the number of users that are temporarily without water. Second, the water level in the tank. Third, the water quality. These three indices can help find separate trends that might not be visible from the overall index. The R index helps in assessing the ability of WDNs to meet the demand for water of appropriate pressure and quality. It also helps assess the restoration process after a disaster. The case study with the R index highlights the usefulness of dividing WDN into districts. This helps reduce the impact on services after a disaster. The case study also discusses the pros and cons of different restoration plans. KEY TAKEAWAY: The R index provides valuable information on the function and restoration of WDNs after disasters. It can serve as a useful tool for planners, engineers, and government agencies. This research relates to the following Sustainable Development Goals: • SDG 6: Clean Water and Sanitation • SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities • SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure • SDG 13: Climate Action • SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: New Resilience Index for Urban Water Distribution Networks, Journal of Structural Engineering, August 2016, American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), DOI: 10.1061/(asce)st.1943-541x.0001433.
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