Next: The Submodules
While there are no definite answers to these questions, we can give
some recommendations, thereby providing at least partial answers.
- What are the parameters of the facility that can be controlled
by the decision makers?
- How can the effects on the environment and on the health of certain
individuals be quantified?
- Since we are concerned with locating a new facility, we
can safely assume that the question "Must the facility be built
anyway?" has already been answered positively. It remains
to find an acceptable location for the facility. Therefore, the
actual location is represented by two (real-valued) unknowns or
parameters which have to be optimized. Since we are assuming that the
main environmental effect of the facility is airborne pollution, we
consider the height of the point of entry of the pollutant into
the atmosphere (e. g. the height of the smokestack) as an additional
We assume that production-dependent considerations have already
fixed the amount of pollutant released in a given time period,
and we assume that the amount released is constant in time. As a
consequence, we are naturally led to the conclusion that all the
physical and toxicological characteristics of the pollutant are
prespecified. This leaves us with the width of the opening of
the "smokestack" (or, alternatively, with the speed of the
exhaust gas) as one additional decision variable.
For more details, we refer to Chapter 5.
At the present moment, environmental policy issues like the choice
of a specific washing system for the exhaust air are not of concern
for us. Adding them to the optimization process is certainly possible,
but the discussion of the optimal use of these technologies goes beyond
the scope of this work.
- On an individual level, a well-established measure for carcinogenic
effects within a certain organ or tissue is the number of
malignant cells appearing within a certain time period. Likewise,
a measure for cytotoxic effects is the number of cells which have
died during a fixed time period. Note, however, that detrimental
effects due to toxicity not leading to the death of certain cells can
not be accounted for in this scheme. Since we are dealing with
low-toxic doses, actual outbreaks of symptoms are not an issue here.
Taking now the position of a postulated central authority (i. e. a
governmental health care official),
the total sum of all health effects over all individuals has to
be minimized. The same analysis holds with respect to environmental
More details with respect to the evaluation of the health effects
can be found in Chapter 5.
The refined structure of the system is depicted in Figure 1.2.
Figure 1.2: General structure of the software developed including health
Next: The Submodules
Wed Dec 22 12:25:31 CET 1999