Development of a knowledge base to support the consideration of groundwater protection in land-use planning

Original Article
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Abstract

Groundwater is an essential resource for water supply, but it is vulnerable to the potential impacts of contaminant emissions from human activities. It is widely recognized that the effects of human activities on groundwater quality and quantity can be mitigated, in large part, by appropriate land-use planning because it plays a central role in groundwater protection and conservation. However, groundwater-related issues are not commonly considered in the land-use decision-making process. The main objective of this paper was to develop a decision-support system (DSS) to fill the gap between groundwater resources management, territorial development and the land-use institutional framework. To achieve this objective, it was necessary to establish a dialogue with decision makers to identify their needs. Then, by linking human activities and their related contaminants and impacts, it was possible to identify land-use planning actions that could support groundwater protection. This research resulted in a tool named “Base de connaissances—aménagement du territoire et eau souterraine” (BC-ATES) [Knowledge base—Land-use planning and groundwater]. This tool was tested using Microsoft Access. It includes all the information identified as relevant by land-use planners in the decision process regarding groundwater needs.

Keywords

Land-use planning Groundwater management Decision-support system Knowledge/data base 

Notes

Acknowledgements

Authors wish to thank land-use planners from the regional county municipalities of Appalaches, l’Islet, Lotbinière, Montmagny and Nouvelle-Beauce for participating in the development of an adapted tool for land-use planners. We also thank François Lajoie from the Organisme de Bassin Versant de la Côte-du-Sud for his help in recruiting participants. We acknowledge Sonja Behmel and Hervé Dandjinou from Watershed Monitoring for their precious help in building and validating the database. We also acknowledge the Réseau québécois sur les eaux souterraines (RQES) and l’Institut national de la recherche scientifique (INRS) for information on their groundwater data and groundwater research methodology. This research project was funded by the Centre de recherche en aménagement et en développement (CRAD) of Laval University, Quebec City (QC), Canada.

Supplementary material

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.École supérieure d’aménagement du territoire et de développement régional (ESAD), Université LavalQuébecCanada
  2. 2.Centre Eau Terre EnvironnementInstitut national de la recherche scientifique (INRS)QuébecCanada

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