Evaluating the Relative Importance of Groundwater Recharge Sources in a Subtropical Alluvial Plain Using Tracer-Based Ternary End Member Mixing Analysis (EMMA)
In Taiwan’s humid climate, proximal fan groundwater (PFG) is mainly sourced from local precipitation (LP), mountain front recharge (MFR), and mountain block recharge (MBR). This study evaluates the relative importance of the above sources’ respective contributions to the PFG of the Langyang alluvial plain (LAP), northeastern Taiwan. To this end, we first identify stable isotopic characteristics of these target waters and evaluate the hydrological relations among them. Further, we employ ternary end member mixing analysis (EMMA) based on δ 18O and electrical conductivity to semi-quantitatively calculate contributing fractions and amounts of water for respective LP, MFR, and MBR end members. EMMA results indicate that the respective contribution fractions of LP, MFR, and MBR to PFG at the LAP are approximately 28, 60, and 12 %, respectively. Further, we employ the obtained contribution fractions to understand the corresponding water amounts of each end-member contributed to PFG. In total, 325 × 106 m3 of water recharges PFG annually; of which, 226 × 106 m3/yr. is from MFR, 76 × 106 m3/yr. from LP, and 23 × 106 m3/yr. from MBR. MFR is clearly the greatest source of water at the LAP and local water resource management and protection authorities should concentrate their energies on this important contributor to groundwater. To keep these results in context, limitations to the EMMA approach are evaluated in the text.
KeywordsMountain front recharge (MFR) Mountain block recharge (MBR) End member mixing analysis (EMMA) Groundwater recharge Taiwan
The authors are very grateful to anonymous reviewers and the Associate Editor for their constructive comments, which greatly improved our manuscript. Work on this paper is divided into two parts. That focusing on meteoric water is an achievement attributable to assistance from the National Science Council, Taiwan (NSC 101-2116-M-005-001 and NSC 102-2116-M-005-001) and that regarding groundwater is attributable to assistance from the Central Geological Survey, Ministry of Economic Affairs, Taiwan (B10249).
- Appelo CAJ, Postma D (1996) Geochemistry, groundwater and pollution. Balkema, Rotterdam, pp. 142–174Google Scholar
- Central Geological Survey (1995) Explanatory text of the geologic map of Sanshin (1:50,000). Ministry of Economic Affairs, Taipei, TaiwanGoogle Scholar
- Central Geological Survey (2013) Hydrogeological investigation and groundwater recharge model simulations: recharge areas delineation and groundwater resources assessment (1/4). Ministry of Economic Affairs, Taipei, TaiwanGoogle Scholar
- Central Weather Bureau (1981–2010) Monthly Precipitation – Ilan. http://www.cwb.gov.tw/V7/climate/monthlyMean/Taiwan precp.htm ; accessed on 1 June 2015.
- Chang CC (1995) Groundwater study of the Ilan area. PhD Thesis of National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei, Taiwan, pp. 259.Google Scholar
- Cheng YC (2010) The paleoenvironment analysis of the Ilan plain. Master’s Thesis of National Taiwan Ocean University, Keelung, Taiwan, p. 75Google Scholar
- Clark ID, Fritz P (1997) Tracing the hydrological cycle. In: Environmental isotopes in hydrogeology. CRC Press, Florida, pp. 35–60Google Scholar
- Dor N, Syafalni S, Abustan I, Rahman MTA, Nazri MAA, Mostafa R, Mejus L (2011) Verification of surface-groundwater connectivity in an irrigation canal using geophysical, water balance and stable isotope approaches. Water Resour Manage 25:2837–2853. doi: 10.1007/s11269-011-9841-y CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Kambhammettu BVNP, King JP, Allena P (2011) Evaluation of mountain-front recharge estimation techniques for southern New Mexico basins. Int J Water Res Environ Eng 3(3):66–72Google Scholar
- Liu KK, Yui TF, Shieh YN, Chiang SC, Chen LH, Hu JY (1990) Hydrogen and oxygen isotopic compositions of meteoric and thermal waters from the Chingshui geothermal area, northeastern Taiwan. Proc Geol Soc China 33(2):143–165Google Scholar
- Panichi C, Gonfiantini R (1981) Geothermal waters. In: Gat J R, Gonfiantini R (eds) Stable isotope hydrology: deuterium and oxygen–18 in the water cycle. International Atomic Energy Agency Technical Report 210, Vienna, pp. 241–271.Google Scholar
- Ping J, Nichol C, Wei X (2014) Quantification of groundwater recharge using the chloride mass balance method in a semi-arid mountain terrain, south interior British Columbia, Canada. J Chem Pharm Res 6(1):383–388Google Scholar
- Snyder RL, Orang M, Matyac S, Grismer ME, M ASCE (2005) Simplified estimation of reference evapotranspiration from pan evaporation data in California. J Irrig Drain Eng 131 (3): 249–253. doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9437(2005)131:3(249).
- Viviroli D, Archer DR, Buytaert W, Fowler HJ, Greenwood GB, Hamlet AF, Huang Y, Koboltschnig G, Litaor MI, L’opez-Moreno JI, Lorentz S, Schädler B, Schreier H, Schwaiger K, Vuille M, Woods R (2011) Climate change and mountain water resources: overview and recommendations for research, management and policy. Hydrol Earth Syst Sc 15:471–504. doi: 10.5194/hess-15-471-2011 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Water Resources Agency (2003) Groundwater resources maps of Taiwan. Ministry of Economic Affairs, Taipei, TaiwanGoogle Scholar