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Title: Regional groundwater level monitoring review : strategy document : project ref no 9013118
Author: D. Seccombe
Document Type: Monograph
The aim of this project is to conduct a strategic review of the Regions groundwater level monitoring network at an estimated cost of 260k over a three year period. The Region currently operates a groundwater level monitoring network that includes the collection and databasing of groundwater level measurements at over 1400. Each site consists of at least one monitoring borehole or well and in some cases additional piezometers. Each site is visited monthly or three monthly to record groundwater level measurements and in some cases servicing level recorders. The estimated replacement cost of the current network is 7m with an estimated annual running cost of 257k, including site maintenance and databasing. The groundwater level network provides important information which enables the Agency to manage the groundwater resources of the Region, Groundwater makes up nearly 50% of the licensed abstraction for the Region. More specifically, results from the groundwater level network are used in water resource planning, determining the overall resource availability, evaluating groundwater licence applications as well as monitoring the effects of existing licensed abstraction on protected rights, particularly rivers and wetlands. The groundwater level monitoring network has evolved over the past 30 years in a piecemeal fashion. In many cases it is not clear what principles or functional objectives were adopted in the selection of individual boreholes within the network. There has been no regional strategic review that considers the objectives and efficiency of running the current network or as to the optimal network design which should be achieved. This strategic review would aim to: review the use of groundwater level data, including current and anticipated customer requirements for data; undertake a full survey of the condition and ownership of the current borehole and site assets; and, undertake a review of the principles on which to design an efficiently run regional groundwater level network so as to review current and match future requirements. This strategic review will take into account and build in the recommendations within the current RanD project "Evaluating Benefits of Hydrometric Networks". It will also take into account any possible overlaps with the groundwater quality network review as well as complimenting the hydrometric monitoring network review of surface water. Various options have been identified within this document. The appraisal of these potential options clearly indicate that the strategic review must be completed. The consequences of Do Nothing option will mean that the Region will continue to operate a groundwater level network with a poor understanding of network efficiency and future data requirements. There would be no understanding of the condition of the assets and therefore, no planned programme for replacement. This would lead to a sub-optimal performance in the management of the Regions groundwater resources. At an extreme it may become that the Region will fail to meet its statutory responsibilities for managing and conserving groundwater resources.
Publisher: Environment Agency
Publication Date: 1996
Publication Place: Peterborough
Subject Keywords: GroundwaterGroundwater monitoringWater levelsStrategiesEnvironment Agency regionsHydrometryRegional planning
Geographic Keywords: EA Anglian
Extent: 27
Total file downloads: 274

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