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July 24, 2017

Humanitarian groundwater projects; notes on motivations from the academic world

Globally, the need for regional hydrologic humanitarian efforts is obvious. Even today, 1,000 children die due to diarrhoeal diseases on a daily basis.

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July 17, 2017

Good groundwater management makes for good neighbors

Post by Samuel Zipper, postdoctoral fellow at both McGill University and the University of Victoria, in Canada. You can follow Sam on Twitter at @ZipperSam. ___________________________________________________________ Dedicated Water Underground readers know that this blog is not just about water science, but also some of the more cultural impacts of groundwater. Keeping in that tradition, today’s post begins with a joke*: Knock, knock! Who’s there? Your neighbor Your neighbor who? Your neighbor’s groundwater, …

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July 9, 2017

Of Karst! – short episodes about karst

Episode 2: Dissolving rock? (or, how karst evolves). This episode will now deal with the processes that create such amazing surface and subsurface landforms. The widely used term “karstification” refers to the chemical weathering of easily soluble rock composed of carbonate rock or gypsum.






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July 2, 2017

Groundwater & Education – Part One

Post by Viviana Re, postdoctoral researcher at the University of  Pavia (Università di Pavia), in Italy. You can follow Viviana on Twitter at @biralnas. Part one of a two part series on groundwater and education by Viviana. ___________________________________________________________ Education /ɛdjʊˈkeɪʃ(ə)n The process of receiving or giving systematic instruction, especially at a school or university. from Latin educatio(n-), from the verb educare Educare is a combination of the words e (out) and ducare (lead, drawing), …

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June 27, 2017

How prehistoric water pit stops may have driven human evolution

Post by Matthew Robert Bennett, Bournemouth University and Mark O Cuthbert, Cardiff University Our ancient ancestors seem to have survived some pretty harsh arid spells in East Africa’s Rift Valley over five million years. Quite how they kept going has long been a mystery, given the lack of water to drink. Now, new research shows that they may have been able to survive on a small networks of springs. The …

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June 26, 2017

What is the difference between ‘water withdrawal’ and ‘water consumption’, and why do we need to know?

Last week I had to teach my first class in global hydrology. When I showed the global trend on increasing demands and withdrawals I needed to explain the different terms as sometimes the term “water use” gets, well, misused.






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June 10, 2017

Is highway de-icing ‘a-salting’ our aquifers?

If you live in a cold climate, have you ever wondered where all the de-icing salt (or ‘grit’ as we call it in the UK) that gets spread on the roads in winter time ends up, aside from that accumulating salty grime that coats your car? As you might expect, most of the salt gets washed off the highways as the salt has the desired effect of melting the ice, or carried away by rain. This salty ‘runoff’ ends up in streams nearby via pipes which drain the highway.






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June 2, 2017

Fire and groundwater

Post by Andy Baker, University of New South Wales The effects of fire on the surface environment are clear to see. Landscapes are coated in ash. Intense fires can destroy all vegetation and alter soil properties. Less intense fires destroy just the surface leaf litter, grasses and shrubs.  Grass fires can be fast moving, destroying buildings and threatening lives. Intense fires can even form their own local weather systems. But …

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May 15, 2017

Squeezed by gravity: how tides affect the groundwater under our feet

While we don’t tend to notice Earth and atmospheric tides, they do affect both the land and the world’s largest freshwater resource located underneath our feet: groundwater. This occupies the pores that exist in geological materials such as sand or soil, much like water in a kitchen sponge.






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May 11, 2017

Groundwater Speed Dating! Can you find a match?

Welcome to the first edition of groundwater speed dating. In today’s post I introduce you to a motley crew of isotopes and chemicals that hydrogeologists and geochemists use to date the age of groundwater.






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