Groundwater overdraft in Taiwan

Groundwater overdraft in Taiwan
Taiwan is the island on the Pacific Ocean. It has many rivers, which are high water and most of the rivers are Mountain Rivers. There are many of the mountain ranges in Taiwan and also there are abundant precipitations here. These peculiarities promote the development of the branched system of rivers. Most of the rivers are short and swift; they are consisting of the great amount of the waterfalls and rapids. The island Taiwan has no many lakes but it also has many hot springs, salt springs. Nevertheless, Taiwan is among the countries where water resources are in danger because of pollution and depletion. Fresh water is actively used and it is necessary part of the economics of the country. People depend on the water resources, they are depending also on service and some goods generated by water-depend ecosystem. Nevertheless, before national management of fresh water usually focuses at the direct use of the domestic sources of the fresh water. Now situation have changed. Now with an increasing dearth of fresh water attention of the national fresh water management has turned to another ways of indirect uses of fresh water by people. There are two directions I want to discuss in my project.
First of all, I want to mention fresh water “used by foreign countries when producing products for export”. (Adelman, 1992) And second indirect use is “fresh water required by local ecosystem”. (Yu, 2000) We know that people’s surviving and development depends on services and also as well depends on goods generated in this hydro ecosystem. Results we have by now show us that “Taiwan’s net imports of fresh water through trade amounts to approximately 25% of its total fresh water use for economic production”. (Konikov & Kendy, 2005) I want to ground my project on the essay “Ground Water Depletion: A Global Problem” the authors of the essay Leonard F. Konikow and Eloise Kendy mentioned that “this work adopted Taiwan as case study”. I want to give here one more quotations from the essay I chosen: “In addition to two widely recognized ecosystem freshwater demands, evapotranspiration and reversed river flow, this study suggests that freshwater is a constituent of some abiotic components, such as groundwater in aquifers, because excessive withdrawal has already caused significant land subsidence in Taiwan”. (Konikov & Kendy, 2005)
According to the researches of some scientists we can see that it is not out of place to say that groundwater go through the different types of pollution as well as fresh water and other water resources all over the world. The situation is also urgent for Taiwan. Ground waters are the vitally important recourse of the Chouchui River alluvial fan in the country. The rapid economical development caused the high increasing of the demand for water. This situation led by turn to “the large scale ground water extraction”. (Yu, 2000) Overdraft of the ground water turns in to big problem for Taiwan. It lowered the ground water level very much. Moreover, even the favorable hydro ecosystem cannot handle the high rate of the economic development and refill the amount of used water resources.
What caused the overdraft of the ground waters? First of all, it caused the intrusion of the seawater. Also, the second display of the problem is the land subsidence. And finally, Taiwan suffered from other environmental damage. The ground waters are one of the main resources of the fresh water for population of Taiwan. The seawater intrusion damaging the sources of the fresh water and as usual simple people are suffering at the first turn. If we add the problem of industrial pollution of the ground waters as well as rivers and springs, we will see that the problem is great. If ground waters are also polluted and it is hard to refresh rivers and other ground resources of fresh drinking water. Moreover, it is impossible to support ground resources – springs, lakes and rivers – if we face the problem of the ground water overdraft. During studying ground water overdraft problem, I found some information about how to help this problem. I found out that the government is trying to create “a decision support system (DSS) for managing ground water resources in Choushui River alluvial fan”. (Liu, 2004) I want to give a quotation form one American journal about this DSS: “This DSS integrates geographic information, ground water simulation, and expert systems. The geographic information system effectively analyzes and displays the spatially varied data and interfaces with the ground water simulation system to compute the dynamic behavior of ground water flow and solute transport in the aquifer”. (Liu, 2004) In addition, there a ground water model exists named MODFLOW-96 it is used “to determine the permissible yield in the Choushui River alluvial fan”. (Liu, 2004) Moreover, DSS has an expert system that employs “the determined aquifer permissible yield to assist local government agencies in issuing water rights permits and managing ground water resources in the Choushui River alluvial fan”. (Liu, 2004)
Thus, taking into account all above presented facts it is possible to say that we can see that careless treatment could damage even favorable conditions and rich resources. It is very good that government, United Nations and some others establishments are interested in how to restore damaged resources; but it would be much more better to think first how to protect ecosystems we already have and use them in right way.

Works cited:

Adelman, L. Evaluating Decision Support and Expert Systems. John Wiley and Sons, New York, 1992.
Konikov, L. & Kendy, E. Essay: Groundwater depletion: A global problem. Hydrogeology journal. Vol.13(1), 2005.
Lee, W, Chen, Y. & Liao, I. Current issue and adjustment of the Taiwan aquaculture industry. Journal of Land Bank of Taiwan. Vol. 38, 17–33, 2001.
Liu, C. Decision Support System for Managing Ground Water resources in the Choushui River Alluvial in Taiwan. Journal of the American Water Resources Association, April, 2004.
Yu, K. Amount of Rational Water-Used for Various Water-Used Sectors. Water Resources Bureau, MOEA, Taiwan, 2000.

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