Aquifer contamination by chlorinated-VOCs: the case of an urban metropolis megasite overlying the Coastal Plain aquifer in Israel

E. Graber
December 2008
Hydrogeology Journal;Dec2008, Vol. 16 Issue 8, p1615
Academic Journal
Abstract  The Tel Aviv metropolitan region (200 km2), located on the sandy and phreatic Mediterranean Coastal Plain aquifer in Israel, is an example of a contaminated megasite that is additionally complicated by being part of a densely populated urban environment. Despite being a major source of fresh potable water, no dedicated aquifer monitoring systems exist. The vast majority of tested water supply wells (82% of 90 wells) were found to be contaminated with one or more chlorinated volatile organic compounds (Cl-VOCs) such as trichloroethene and tetrachloroethene, originating from multiple sources, including former industrial sites. Temporal variations in Cl-VOC concentrations in water supply wells were large and unpredictable. Such aquifer contamination requires immediate action in terms of aquifer management and municipal water distribution. To cope with temporal and spatial variations in contaminant concentrations in water supply wells in an area where monitoring wells are absent, aquifer impact areas were defined based on the concentration of the Cl-VOC contaminant in pumping wells that was greatest in relation to its drinking water standard over a 3-year period. Such a map can be used to define water supply treatment and municipal well monitoring requirements, until an adequate monitoring system is established.


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