Groundwater Guidelines – Managing an Unseen Resource in South Africa

Industry literature / 28 September 2020 by GEOSS South Africa / GEOSS
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South Africa is a country with diverse climatic conditions and water resources are scarce in most parts of the country. Groundwater provides a crucial supply of water in the more arid regions. Approximately 70% of all groundwater usage is for agricultural purposes. However, there is still a lot of uncertainty about how groundwater should be located, there is a lack of knowledge about how to determine the safe yield of a borehole and there are still very few instances of proper groundwater monitoring and management. In addition, there is a lot of confusion regarding the authorised use of groundwater. The current situation means that a lot of unnecessary expenditure occurs when groundwater is being developed and many irrigation schemes are built on very little scientific knowledge of borehole and groundwater characteristics. Groundwater must be used carefully as it is a finite resource and overuse can have long term effects on an aquifer.

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