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This paper reports a long-term field investigation of a fractured dolostone aquifer that was penetrated by a dense non-aqueous phase liquid. High-resolution source zone characterization shows the evolution of deep penetration to the back-diffusion conditions seen at the present day. Metolachlor, a common herbicide, was released into the overburden overlying a fractured dolostone aquifer within a short time window (1978–81). In 2000, the plume front arrived at a municipal supply well located 930 m down-gradient, increasing to a maximum concentration of 2 μg l−1. Groundwater monitoring with high-resolution, depth-discrete multi-level sampling systems since 1992 shows a clearly...

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