Are you a user of groundwater (extraction by well or borehole) or are you a provider (e.g., manager, driller, transporter etc.) of groundwater
Describe your everyday interactions with groundwater. Consider water collection, water uses, water treatment, water storage, water provision. Consider the setting of this interaction (homestead - local - regional - national - trans-national)
I conduct regionally relevant research that is largely based on localized groundwater observation wells, borehole logs, and other sources of subsurface information.
Describe your above indicated challenges(s) that you see in relation to groundwater. Consider the prompts above to guide your description if necessary. If you see >1 challenge, write about each challenge in a separate paragraph, making it clear which challenge you are referring to throughout. Make a note of the periodicity of each challenge.
As a researcher studying regional groundwater resources, all of the above mentioned issues are relevant. Within the region of interest (Canadian Interior Plains region/Great Plains/Prairies), the groundwater system is highly heterogeneous and complex. Groundwater is commonly available, but at irregular depths, quantities, and qualities. Some areas are at risk of excessive depletion, while some areas are at risk of changing quality due to natural saline water migrating to existing extraction areas, or due to contamination of shallow water resources. The extent of available resources and the limit of potential extraction is largely unknown, and well licensing is assessed on a case-by-case basis by considering only the short-term impact on adjacent users - no mechanisms exist for strategic groundwater planning. Coupled to these issues is the impact of climate variability - early models predict increased recharge in some areas, and decreased recharge in others. The ultimate impact is unknown.
What does an ideal situation look like for addressing the above-described challenge(s) in this context?
Developing a better understanding of the limits and "health" of the regional groundwater system that can be used to develop effective groundwater management policies. This understanding should be flexible enough to allow adaptation appropriate to local conditions.
Do you use space technologies within your use / provision / management of groundwater or for any application related to the above-described challenge(s)?
If yes, how do you use space technologies within your use / provision / management of groundwater or for any application related to the above-described challenge(s)?
GRACE-derived data products provide insight into groundwater storage changes. DEM and other satellite imagery can be used to infer some subsurface conditions.
Do you, and if so how, consider that space technologies could help solve the above-described challenge(s) if they’re not already being used?
Yes, by providing large scale data and observations that can help stitch together heterogeneous localized observatons.
What solutions, other than space based, do you consider for tackling the above-described challenge(s)?
Statistical, modelling, ground-based observation research and finding novel ways to translate that research into useable guidance for decision makers.
What resources (if any) would you have available to help address the above-described challenge(s)? (e.g. time, financial, technical, software, data, networks)
Mentorship from knowledgeable experts - not only academic, but industry, drillers, consultants, and regulators. Time, technical support for statistical methods, rich ground-based data collection, ()citizen science?)
Do you consider any obstacles in implementing your above described solution(s)?
Existing disciplinary boundaries ("accepted" paradigms and methodologies) and limited communication between researchers, industry, and regulators