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Impact of reduced flow on 137Cs behavior in Ismailia Canal and surrounding groundwater systems


This paper assesses the potential impact of reduced Nile water due to the construction of Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) on flow and contaminant transport pattern in Ismailia Canal and its surrounding area. The groundwater/surface water system has been characterized, conceptualized, and modeled numerically and analytically, with assessing the response against this expected reduced discharge. The isotopic signature of seventeen samples helped in the identification of different recharge sources in the study area and demarcates the boundary conditions that might encounter the conceptualization of the study area. Based on the inflow/outflow components from MODFLOW under present-day conditions and reducing surface water discharge in the studied area, it was revealed that at the end of the year 2024, the contribution from the canal to the modeled groundwater system will be decreased by 6%, 8%, and 11%, by decreasing 20%, 30%, and 40% of the original canal flow according to three proposed scenarios. This reduced flow would increase the contaminate load of 137Cs in the groundwater system by 2.5-fold than that expected in case of the non-reduced flow in Ismailia Canal at the end of the simulation (year 2038). Furthermore, the impact of surface water conditions (flow, velocity, dispersion) on 137Cs dispersion and temporal/spatial distribution has been analyzed, revealing the side effect of GERD on Ismailia Canal, as a response to the decrement in the Nile flow.

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Correspondence to Kamilia Hagagg.

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Sadek, M., Hagagg, K. Impact of reduced flow on 137Cs behavior in Ismailia Canal and surrounding groundwater systems. Environ Sci Pollut Res 27, 44279–44291 (2020).

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  • GERD
  • Ismailia Canal
  • Reduced flow
  • Contamination load
  • Groundwater modeling
  • Surface water modeling