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Global Assessment of Seawater Intrusion Problems (Status and Vulnerability)


In this research paper we propose a novel method to perform an integrated analysis of the status and vulnerability of coastal aquifers to seawater intrusion (SWI). The method is based on a conceptual approach of intrusion that allows to summarised results in a visual way at different spatial scales, moving from steady pictures (corresponding to instantaneous or mean values in a period) including maps and 2D conceptual cross-sections and temporal series of lumped indices. Our aim is to help in the identification of coastal groundwater bodies at risk of not achieving good chemical status according to the Water Framework Directive. The indices are obtained from available information about aquifer geometry and historical monitoring data (chloride concentration and hydraulic head data). This method may be applied even in cases where a reduced number of data are available. It does not require complex modelling and has been implemented in a GIS tool that encourages its use in other cases. Analysis of the evolution of historical time series of these indices can be used to assess resilience and trends with respect to SWI problems. This method can be also useful to compare intrusion problems in different aquifers and temporal periods.

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This work have been partially supported by the CGL2013-48424-C2-2-R project and the Plan de Garantía Juvenil from Mineco, co-financing by BEI and FSE.

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Correspondence to Leticia Baena-Ruiz.

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Baena-Ruiz, L., Pulido-Velazquez, D., Collados-Lara, AJ. et al. Global Assessment of Seawater Intrusion Problems (Status and Vulnerability). Water Resour Manage 32, 2681–2700 (2018).

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  • Global change
  • Seawater intrusion
  • Coastal aquifer
  • Lumped indices
  • Vulnerability