Environmental impact and mitigation of intake interruptions for Basin Aquifer Transfer Recovery systems
“The frequency and duration of intake interruptions for managed aquifer recharge (MAR) systems are on the rise due to climate change (more droughts and higher peak flows) and unrelenting environmental pollution. Interruptions form a normal problem and even a motivation to apply MAR. They put, however, exorbitant stress on Aquifer Transfer and Recovery (ATR) systems, which need to continuously deliver water by recovery after aquifer passage.
In the coastal dunes of the Netherlands, where large-scale Basin ATR is applied for drinking water supply since 1940-1957, intake interruptions are problematic, not only because of the necessity to supply nonstop drinking water to the Western Netherlands. There are also high risks of (i) salt water intrusion or upconing when drawing upon the stored volumes, (ii) undesired water quality changes due to oxidation processes when water tables decline or due to pumping more ambient groundwater, (iii) entrapped air hampering a rapid refill of the groundwater reservoir, and (iv) ecological damage of nearby wet dune slacks with an EU Natura 2000 status, which cannot survive without the artificially maintained high water levels. Examples are presented of the environmental impact of these risks, based on historical records.”
(Citaat: Stuyfzand, P.J. – Environmental impact and mitigation of intake interruptions for Basin Aquifer Transfer Recovery systems – ISMAR 10, Madrid, Spain, 20-24 May 2019, p.123)