2004 Denver Annual Meeting (November 7–10, 2004)

Paper No. 8
Presentation Time: 3:55 PM


RUDOLPH, David L., Earth Sciences, University of Waterloo, 200 University Avenue, Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1, drudolph@sciborg.uwaterloo.ca

Within the hydrogeological community, there is a growing emphasis on regionally integrated problems where integration involves a combined consideration of groundwater, surface water and in some cases, atmospheric processes. This trend has been due in part to an expanding international focus on water resource management that frequently involves the conjunctive use of both surface water and groundwater. Although the emphasis is often on drinking water issues, the need for an integrated approach to hydrologic investigation is also apparent in problems related to ecosystem health, water resource sustainability and the potential impacts of gradual changes in climatic conditions. The hydrogeologic community is now being encouraged to increase it’s interaction with surface water hydrologists, ecologists, and climatologists. While this involves a steep learning curve for many of us, it is a necessary response to the increasing profile of the groundwater component of hydrologic system. A challenge for the hydrogeological community is to determine the nature of the information and data that are required to feed into these integrated studies. For example, what type of hydrogeological data should be collected, and what are the appropriate spatial and temporal distributions of that data, considering the prohibitive costs associated with hydrogeologic field data? To meet this challenge, initiatives, such as CUAHSI’s HydroView, will lead to large-scale research observatories where extensive data collection networks will be established, supported by programs of data management, analysis, and synthesis. This paper will discuss the utility of these highly investigative observatories within the context of transferring the knowledge gained to other geographic areas where the data availability is much less dense and where the data collection budget is very restricted. Through a series of case applications involving problems typical of both urban and rural environments, issues related to appropriate data collection, measurement scale, and the application of modelling tools will be explored.