Ubiquitous hydrogeological uncertainty undermines the veracity of quantitative predictions of soil and groundwater contamination due to accidental hydrocarbon spills from onshore pipelines. Such predictions, therefore, must be accompanied by quantification of predictive uncertainty, especially when they are used for environmental risk assessment. We quantify the impact of parametric uncertainty on quantitative forecasting of temporal evolution of two key risk indices, volumes of unsaturated and saturated soil contaminated by a surface spill of light nonaqueous-phase liquids. This is accomplished by treating the relevant uncertain parameters as random variables and deploying two alternative probabilistic models to estimate their effect on predictive uncertainty. A physics-based model is solved with a stochastic collocation method and is supplemented by a global sensitivity analysis. A second model represents the quantities of interest as polynomials of random inputs and has a virtually negligible computational cost, which enables one to explore any number of risk-related contamination scenarios. For a typical oil-spill scenario, our method can be used to identify key flow and transport parameters affecting the risk indices, to elucidate texture-dependent behavior of different soils, and to evaluate, with a degree of confidence specified by the decision-maker, the extent of contamination and the correspondent remediation costs.

Impact of Hydrogeological Uncertainty on Estimation of Environmental Risks Posed by Hydrocarbon Transportation Networks

Ciriello, Valentina;Lauriola, Ilaria;Bonvicini, Sarah;Cozzani, Valerio;Di Federico, Vittorio;Tartakovsky, Daniel M.
2017

Abstract

Ubiquitous hydrogeological uncertainty undermines the veracity of quantitative predictions of soil and groundwater contamination due to accidental hydrocarbon spills from onshore pipelines. Such predictions, therefore, must be accompanied by quantification of predictive uncertainty, especially when they are used for environmental risk assessment. We quantify the impact of parametric uncertainty on quantitative forecasting of temporal evolution of two key risk indices, volumes of unsaturated and saturated soil contaminated by a surface spill of light nonaqueous-phase liquids. This is accomplished by treating the relevant uncertain parameters as random variables and deploying two alternative probabilistic models to estimate their effect on predictive uncertainty. A physics-based model is solved with a stochastic collocation method and is supplemented by a global sensitivity analysis. A second model represents the quantities of interest as polynomials of random inputs and has a virtually negligible computational cost, which enables one to explore any number of risk-related contamination scenarios. For a typical oil-spill scenario, our method can be used to identify key flow and transport parameters affecting the risk indices, to elucidate texture-dependent behavior of different soils, and to evaluate, with a degree of confidence specified by the decision-maker, the extent of contamination and the correspondent remediation costs.
Ciriello, Valentina; Lauriola, Ilaria; Bonvicini, Sarah; Cozzani, Valerio; Di Federico, Vittorio; Tartakovsky, Daniel M.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/615409
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