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Custodio E.,Espana University | Andreu-Rodes J.M.,University of Alicante | Aragon R.,Instituto Geologico Y Minero Of Espana Igme | Estrela T.,Confederacion Hidrografica del Jucar CHJ | And 7 more authors.
Science of the Total Environment | Year: 2016

Intensive groundwater development is a common circumstance in semiarid and arid areas. Often abstraction exceeds recharge, thus continuously depleting reserves. There is groundwater mining when the recovery of aquifer reserves needs more than 50 years. The MASE project has been carried out to compile what is known about Spain and specifically about the south-eastern Iberian Peninsula and the Canary Islands. The objective was the synthetic analysis of available data on the hydrological, economic, managerial, social, and ethical aspects of groundwater mining. Since the mid-20th century, intensive use of groundwater in south-eastern Spain allowed extending and securing the areas with traditional surface water irrigation of cash crops and their extension to former dry lands, taking advantage of good soils and climate. This fostered a huge economic and social development. Intensive agriculture is a main activity, although tourism plays currently an increasing economic role in the coasts. Many aquifers are relatively high yielding small carbonate units where the total groundwater level drawdown may currently exceed 300 m. Groundwater storage depletion is estimated about 15 km3. This volume is close to the total contribution of the Tagus-Segura water transfer, but without large investments paid for with public funds. Seawater desalination complements urban supply and part of cash crop cultivation. Reclaimed urban waste water is used for irrigation. Groundwater mining produces benefits but associated to sometimes serious economic, administrative, legal and environmental problems. The use of an exhaustible vital resource raises ethical concerns. It cannot continue under the current legal conditions. A progressive change of water use paradigm is the way out, but this is not in the mind of most water managers and politicians. The positive and negative results observed in south-eastern Spain may help to analyse other areas under similar hydrogeological conditions in a less advanced stage of water use evolution. © 2016 Elsevier B.V. Source


Pedro-Monzonis M.,Polytechnic University of Valencia | Solera A.,Polytechnic University of Valencia | Ferrer J.,Confederacion Hidrografica del Jucar CHJ | Estrela T.,Confederacion Hidrografica del Jucar CHJ | Paredes-Arquiola J.,Polytechnic University of Valencia
Journal of Hydrology | Year: 2015

Water represents an essential element for the life of all who inhabit our planet. But the random nature of this resource, which is manifested by the alternation of wet periods and dry periods, makes it even more precious. Whatever the approach (water planning, water management, drought, economy), in order to maximise the profit produced by the allocation of water it is necessary an understanding of the relationships between physical variables as precipitation, temperatures, streamflows, reservoir volumes, piezometric levels, water demands and infrastructures management. This paper attends to provide a review of fundamental water scarcity and drought indexes that enables to assess the status of a water exploitation system. With the aim of a better water management and governance under water scarcity conditions., this paper also presents a classification of indexes to help decision makers and stakeholders to select the most appropriate indexes, taking as the starting point the objectives of the analysis and the river basin features. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. Source


Pedro-Monzonis M.,Polytechnic University of Valencia | Solera A.,Polytechnic University of Valencia | Ferrer J.,Confederacion Hidrografica del Jucar CHJ | Andreu J.,Polytechnic University of Valencia | Estrela T.,Confederacion Hidrografica del Jucar CHJ
Science of the Total Environment | Year: 2016

Water planning and the Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) represent the best way to help decision makers to identify and choose the most adequate alternatives among other possible ones. The System of Environmental-Economic Accounting for Water (SEEA-W) is displayed as a tool for the building of water balances in a river basin, providing a standard approach to achieve comparability of the results between different territories. The target of this paper is to present the building up of a tool that enables the combined use of hydrological models and water resources models to fill in the SEEA-W tables. At every step of the modelling chain, we are capable to build the asset accounts and the physical water supply and use tables according to SEEA-W approach along with an estimation of the water services costs. The case study is the Jucar River Basin District (RBD), located in the eastern part of the Iberian Peninsula in Spain which as in other many Mediterranean basins is currently water-stressed. To guide this work we have used PATRICAL model in combination with AQUATOOL Decision Support System (DSS). The results indicate that for the average year the total use of water in the district amounts to 15,143 hm3/year, being the Total Water Renewable Water Resources 3909 hm3/year. On the other hand, the water service costs in Jucar RBD amounts to 1634 million € per year at constant 2012 prices. It is noteworthy that 9% of these costs correspond to non-conventional resources, such as desalinated water, reused water and water transferred from other regions. © 2016 Elsevier B.V. Source


Pedro-Monzonis M.,Polytechnic University of Valencia | Ferrer J.,Confederacion Hidrografica del Jucar CHJ | Solera A.,Polytechnic University of Valencia | Estrela T.,Confederacion Hidrografica del Jucar CHJ | Paredes-Arquiola J.,Polytechnic University of Valencia
Procedia Engineering | Year: 2014

Currently, water accounts are one of the next steps to be implemented in European River Basin Management Plans. One of the major handicaps lies on computing water resources availability as it depends on several factors, some of which are difficult to quantify. Building water accounts is a complex task, mainly due to the lack of common European definitions and procedures for calculating water availability. For their development, when data is not systematically measured, simulation models and estimations are necessary. The main idea of this paper is to obtain a general scheme to quantify water availability in a river basin and apply it in the European context of water planning. The Jucar River Basin, located in the eastern part of the Iberian Peninsula in Spain, has been taken as a study case. Overall, as the European Union consists of countries with different hydrology, emulating the hydrological cycle may not always be enough. Consequently, a possible procedure would be to incorporate all the elements necessary for determining water accounts within the hydrological models, or within water resources management models, or an intermediate solution. © 2014 Published by Elsevier Ltd. Source

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