February 16 2012

Selection of the Most Feasible Investment Utilizing the MCDA Decision Tool

Decision-making in environmental projects requires consideration of trade-offs between socio-political, environmental, and economic impacts, and the process is often complicated by various stakeholder views.

Multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) emerged as a useful tool to compare  all advantages and disadvantages associated with available investment alternatives, in order to select and justify the most suitable option. Especially for environmental decision making, MCDA can play a vital role for concluding complex decision-making processes.

A monitory value is then assigned to each available option in accordance to each benefit (the four available urban planning options we have in our example are Landfilling (LF), Landfilling with Landfill gas recovery (LF with LFG recovery), anaerobic digestion with rejected waste incineration (AD with RDF) and incineration of 100% waste. These monitory values are then multiplied with associated benefits and summed up to analyze most feasible option (shown in figure 2). The MCDA tool features vary according to the ground condition of project, however, the simplest process of decision-making is to enlist benefits associated with all available options and then assign weights to these benefits according to their effectivity as shown in figure 1 (column 2).

Ideally, summation of all associated benefits and monitory values should be 100 in order to evaluate most justified results. In our example, AD with RDF treatment of waste management is most feasible with 50.36% feasibility, when compared to the other three options.

Do you think MCDA should be adopted as a vital decision tool for governmental urban planning projects and/or councils should utilize MCDA in order to select and justify the best investment option, while taking into consideration all related issues, concerns, benefits and drawbacks?

Credits: Images and data linked to sources.

Ubaid Khan

Ubaid Khan has over six years of operational, development, technical and environmental experience in the Waste Management and the Environmental Industry sectors in the Middle East and United Kingdom. During his career he liaised with various municipalities and undertaken a variety of environmental projects including planning waste management schemes for urban regions, design and construction of engineered landfills, landfill gas recovery systems, and material recovery facilities. Ubaid has completed his MSc in Energy and Environmental Management from University of Abertay Dundee, with distinction.In response of his academic achievements during the course university had awarded “University of Abertay Dundee Excellence Scholarship award for year 2010-11.”

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This entry was posted on Thursday, February 16th, 2012 at 8:53 pm and is filed under Branding, Energy, Engineering, Environment, Environmental Design, Environmental Non-Profit, Urban Development/Real Estate, Urban Planning and Design. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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