Tension over equitable allocation of water: estimating renewable groundwater resources beneath the West Bank and Israel
M. M. Mansour, D. W. Peach, A. G. Hughes, N. S. Robins, 2012. "Tension over equitable allocation of water: estimating renewable groundwater resources beneath the West Bank and Israel", Military Aspects of Hydrogeology, E. P. F. Rose, J. D. Mather
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Competition for water resources between Palestine and Israel is an ongoing cause of tension. The Western Aquifer Basin forms a major part of the complex, largely karst, limestone system of the West Bank Mountain Aquifer. The aquifer crops out and is recharged solely in the semi-arid uplands of the West Bank and groundwater flows west beneath Israel to discharge at the Yarqon and Nahal Taninim springs near the Mediterranean coast. Annual recharge to the aquifer is not easy to quantify but lies within the range 270×106 to 455×106 m3 a−1, and current uncertainties do not support definition of a single value of long-term average recharge. The resource is heavily exploited and abstraction is directly controlled and apportioned between Israel and the West Bank by Israel. The key to equitable apportionment is the determination of the long-term average recharge to the basin, which also requires definition of the eastern boundary of the basin to confirm the recharge area. Calculations include empirical formulae and process-based models that are likely to constrain the best estimate provided that there is appropriate, ongoing monitoring. Improved understanding can then be fed back into the model.
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This book, generated under the auspices of the Geological Society of London’s History of Geology and Hydrogeological Groups, contains 20 papers from authors in the UK, USA, Germany and Austria. Historically, it gives examples of the influence of groundwater on battlefield tactics and fortress construction; describes how groundwater was developed for water supply and overcome as an obstacle to military engineering and cross-country vehicular movement by both sides in World Wars I and II; and culminates with examples of the application of hydrogeology to site boreholes in recent conflicts, notably in Afghanistan. Examples of current research described include hydrological model development; the impact of variations in soil moisture on explosive threat detection and cross-country vehicle mobility; contamination arising from defence sites and its remediation; privatization of water supplies; and the equitable allocation of resources derived from an international transboundary aquifer.