$13 Million for Rio Cobre Groundwater Project


Some $13 million has been set aside in the 2013/14 Estimates of Expenditure, now before the House of Representatives, to continue work on the Water Resources Authority’s (WRA) Evaluating Groundwater Recharge in the Upper Rio Cobre Basin programme.

The project seeks to assess the potential for water-related developments and the resource capacity to meet present and future demand, as well as the continuous updating of the National Water Resources Master Plan.

The allocation for this fiscal year will go towards: providing additional training to other WRA staff members in the application of isotopes techniques in hydrology and the procurement of two battery operated pumps.

The funds will also go towards the development of a database with new and existing information pertaining to the recharging of groundwater in the Rio Cobre, consisting of data and groundwater levels, spring and river discharge, isotopes, chemistry and meteorological parameters.

Achievements up to February this year include: procurement of current meters and groundwater probes with rainwater collectors; conceptual model of groundwater recharge and flow in the Rio Cobre hydro geological system developed; training of WRA staff in the application of isotopes techniques in hydrology; first set of samples collected and sent to a laboratory in Austria for isotope analysis.

The project, which is being administered through the Ministry of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change, began in April 2012, and is slated to end in March 2014.

By Chris Patterson, JIS Reporter

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