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Investigation of groundwater potential and groundwater pollution risk using the multi-criteria method: a case study (the Alasehir sub-basin, western Turkey)
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Determination of the groundwater potential (GWP) and groundwater pollution risk (GWPR) areas is a very important tool in the semi-arid regions in the world. Like many countries in the world, most of the major settlements in the cities of Turkey are located in permeable alluvial plains. Therefore, significant groundwater pollution is encountered in an alluvial plain containing settlements and industrial sites. This study focuses on the determination of the GWP and GWPR areas in the Alasehir sub-basin, which is one of the economically important districts of the Aegean region, located in the Gediz River basin in western Turkey. In this study, the GWP and the GWPR areas were identified and a GWP index map was generated. The GWP areas in the study basin were determined using different proxies as a multi-criteria method based on geographic information system (GIS) integrated with remote sensing (RS). The result of the study indicates that the most GWP locations in the basin are seen in the west and southeast of the study region. Based on these results, it is understood that the significant GWP and GWPR areas are near the big settlement districts such as Alasehir and Salihli. In particular, the 115-ha organized industrial zone located in the Salihli district is an important factor of the potential for consuming and contaminating water resources. This study method is so important for the selection of both city and industrial areas as well as for regional environmental planning in terms of the GWPR management.