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Seawater intrusion in the Salalah plain aquifer, Oman
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
2007 (English)In: Environmental Geology, ISSN 0943-0105, E-ISSN 1432-0495, Vol. 53, no 3, 575-587 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Salalah is situated on a fresh water aquifer that is replenished during the annual monsoon season. The aquifer is the only source of water in Salalah city. The rainfall and mist precipitation in the Jabal AlQara recharges the plain with significant renewable fresh groundwater that has allowed agricultural and industrial development to occur. In Salalah city where groundwater has been used extensively since the early 1980s for agricultural, industrial and municipal purposes, the groundwater has been withdrawn from the aquifer more rapidly than it can be replenished by natural recharge. The heavy withdrawal of large quantities of the groundwater from the aquifer has led to the intrusion of seawater. Agricultural activities utilize over 70% of the groundwater. For the study of the saltwater intrusion, the area has been divided into four strips, A, B, C and D, on the basis of land-use in the area. Water samples were collected from 18 water wells. Chemical analysis of major ions and pollution parameters in the groundwater was carried out and compared to the previous observed values. The electrical conductivity and chloride concentrations were highest in the agricultural and residential strips and Garziz grass farm. Before 1992 the aquifer was in a steady state, but presently (2005) the groundwater quality in most of the agricultural and residential strips does not meet drinking water standards. In addition, model simulations were developed with the computer code MODFLOW and MT3DMS for solute transport to determine the movement of the freshwater/saltwater interface. The study proposes the protection of the groundwater in Salalah plain aquifer from further encroachment by artificial recharge with reclaimed water, preferably along the Salalah coastal agricultural strip. This scheme can also be applied to other regions with similar conditions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2007. Vol. 53, no 3, 575-587 p.
Keyword [en]
Oman; Over-pumping; Reclaimed water and artificial recharge; Saltwater intrusion; Septic tanks; Aquifers; Concentration (process); Groundwater resources; Rain; Septic tanks; Water treatment; Over-pumping; Reclaimed water and artificial recharge; Saltwater intrusion; Seawater; agricultural land; aquifer; coastal zone; drinking water; freshwater environment; groundwater pollution; human activity; ion; monsoon; precipitation (climatology); rainfall; saline intrusion; seawater; simulation;
National Category
Water Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-7146DOI: 10.1007/s00254-007-0673-2ISI: 000250464700011Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-35649028885OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-7146DiVA: diva2:12067
Note
QC 20100818. Även publicerad i Journal of Environmental Hydrology, Vol. 15, 2007, s. 1-14.Available from: 2007-05-20 Created: 2007-05-20 Last updated: 2010-08-18Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Sustainable management of the Salalah coastal aquifer in Oman using an integrated approach
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Sustainable management of the Salalah coastal aquifer in Oman using an integrated approach
2007 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
Abstract [en]

Most of the coastal areas around the globe depend on coastal aquifers vulnerable to salt water intrusion. The Salalah plain in southern Oman is underlain by a shallow limestone aquifer extending north up to the foot of the Jabal AlQara which reach a height of about 1000 m. A major part of the recharge to the aquifer is through fog condensation on the forest on the upper slopes of the mountain. Increasing population and water use for agriculture has caused limited salt-water intrusion. There is an urgent need for management of the aquifer to avoid further intrusion. A numerical flow model was developed for the Salalah coastal aquifer using both the MODFLOW and the MT3DMS computer codes to study the present water flow and future water turnover, the latter under different scenarios. The fog collecting forest is under threat due to the browsing of herds of camels. Recharge of treated wastewater is a management measure already in operation. Other management options considered, are restrictions on the use of water in irrigation and improvements in irrigation practices. Still another measure is reforestation of Jabal AlQara.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH, 2007. xii, 22 p.
Series
Trita-LWR. PHD, ISSN 1650-8602 ; 2007:1031
Keyword
groundwater, cosatal aquifer, salt water instrusion, fog, modelling
National Category
Water Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-4384 (URN)978-91-7178-645-6 (ISBN)
Public defence
2007-05-29, V1, KTH, Teknikringen 76, Stockholm, 10:15
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
QC 20100817Available from: 2007-05-20 Created: 2007-05-20 Last updated: 2010-08-18Bibliographically approved

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