The Upper Devonian Sandstone aquifer of Fife

O Dochartaigh, B.E.; Ball, D.F.; Browne, M.A.E; Shand, P.; MacDonald, A.M. ORCID:; Robins, N.S.; McNeill, G.W.. 1999 The Upper Devonian Sandstone aquifer of Fife. Nottingham, UK, British Geological Survey, 58pp. (WD/99/039) (Unpublished)

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The Devonian sandstone aquifer of Fife has long been recognised as one of the most important hydrogeological units in Scotland. Its importance was first acknowledged by Earp and Eden (1961), and the aquifer was later described by Foster et al (1976). Data were subsequently gathered together in map form (BGS, 1986) but little analysis of the aquifer was carried out other than a dissertation prepared by Barker (1981), occasional reports on specific issues such as nitrate pollution (e.g. Frost and Sargent, 1993; MacDonald, 1993; Ball, 1994), and the preparation of the 1: 100 000 scale Aquifer Vulnerability Map of Fife (SEPA, 1999). The aquifer currently supplies some 20 Ml/d during the winter, rising to 40 Ml/d in the summer months, when irrigation boreholes are put into use. Groundwater provides an important back up to public water supplies, particularly during dry years when river abstraction is restricted. Despite this, relatively little is known about the overall renewable resource potential of the aquifer. It is also only in recent years that means of safeguarding groundwater from pollution have been investigated in any detail. Renewed interest in the aquifer is now being driven on two fronts. The first is that the East of Scotland Water Authority (ESWA) needs to expand its source provision due to increasing demand. The second is that the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) needs to look more closely at the aquifer potential if in the future groundwater abstraction licensing is introduced in significant aquifers (Robins and Ball, 1998). In addition, the requirements of the proposed EU Water Framework Directive indicate that a greater understanding of the aquifer and the sources it supplies will be needed in order to implement properly integrated surface and groundwater management on a catchment basis. With these goals in mind, the East of Scotland Water Authority, Scottish Environment Protection Agency and NERC have jointly commissioned this preliminary study of the Eden valley aquifer.

Item Type: Publication - Report
Programmes: BGS Programmes > Groundwater Management
Funders/Sponsors: British Geological Survey, East of Scotland Water Authority, Scottish Environment Protection Agency
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: This item has been internally reviewed, but not externally peer-reviewed.
Additional Keywords: GroundwaterBGS, Groundwater, Groundwater resources
Date made live: 25 Apr 2018 10:20 +0 (UTC)

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