22-27 September 2019
Trade Fairs and Congress Center (FYCMA)
Europe/Madrid timezone

Methods to evaluate aquifer recharge in Spain for water planning

23 Sep 2019, 15:00
Conference room 2.1 ()

Conference room 2.1

Oral Topic 1 - Groundwater assessment and management Parallel


Prof. Emilio Custodio (Departamento de Ingeniería Civil y Ambiental, Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña (UPC). Royal Academy of Sciences of Spain)


Aquifer recharge is one of the most difficult water balance terms of a given territory to be accurately evaluated. But its knowledge and variability are essential for water planning to attend the human and ecological needs. Recharge is not an independent value for a given aquifer when water exchange between aquifers and other water bodies are significant as in this case the value depends on other factors such as the estate of water exploitation. Recharge evaluation has a high dependence on spatial and time scale, and the different methods available in a given situation do not yield results that are conceptually equivalent. So, calculations have to be carefully done and compared. In Spain, a relatively large effort has been done at peninsular, hydrographic district, river basin, aquifer and local scales in this regard. This is presented in the report RAEMIA (Aquifer recharge, methods and water isotope support. Application to water planning and knowledge of groundwater in Spain), just finished and under publication as an open-access e-book, produced by the Technical University of Catalonia and sponsored by CETAQUA and SUEZ. This report deals with the different recharge evaluation methods currently available, including those based on hydrodynamic and water balance concepts and on natural tracer studies and mass balance. These methods include the support on satellite data. The supporting examples are worldwide, with special reference to Spanish ones and also the application in Ibero-American areas. The application to water planning and the experience in different peninsular and island areas are summarized and commented. Special consideration deserves the different large spatial scale models and atmospheric chloride ion deposition balance. The report tries to contribute to the open discussion on the validity of the different models, discussion which is lively in water scarce areas, considering that scarcity is mostly an excess of water demand in highly agriculturally productive areas or exposed to increasing pollution

Primary authors

Prof. Emilio Custodio (Departamento de Ingeniería Civil y Ambiental, Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña (UPC). Royal Academy of Sciences of Spain) Dr Jorge Jódar (Instituto Geológico y Minero de España (IGME))

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