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TitleGroundwater recharge assessment in the Chateauguay River watershed
AuthorCroteau, A; Nastev, M; Lefebvre, R
SourceCanadian Water Resources Journal vol. 35, no. 4, 2010 p. 451-468,
Alt SeriesEarth Sciences Sector, Contribution Series 20120146
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
NTS31G/01; 31H/04; 31H/05
AreaNew York; Chateauguay; Mercier; Saint-Rémi; Sainte-Clotilde-de-Châteauguay; Sainte-Martine; Howick; Ormstown; Huntingdon; Athelstan; Malone; Canada; United States
Lat/Long WENS-74.5000 -73.5833 45.4167 44.7000
Subjectshydrogeology; watersheds; surface waters; groundwater; groundwater discharge; groundwater regimes; groundwater resources; recharge rates; runoff; evaporation; Chateauguay River watershed; climate change
Illustrationslocation maps; graphs; plots; profiles
ProgramQuantitative risk assessment, Public Safety Geoscience
AbstractThe objective of this study was to evaluate groundwater recharge in the Chateauguay River watershed. The Hydrologic Evaluation of Landfill Performance (HELP) model was used to assess daily values of recharge, evapotranspiration and runoff. The study area was divided into a regular grid, 250 m × 250 m, for a total of 47,616 grid elements. The input parameters included soil physical properties, land use, vegetation and climate data. Calibration of HELP was carried out against runoff and baseflow estimates obtained from separation of five river hydrographs. Over a 39 year period, the mean annual recharge rate was estimated at 86 mm, or 9% of the total precipitation. Areas characterized by high water level elevations and unconfined flow conditions were identified as the main recharge areas. Daily estimates show that recharge takes place mainly in spring and fall. Over the observed period, the annual variations of evapotranspiration and runoff were directly related to changes in precipitation, whereas the annual recharge response was subdued, with much lower variations. HELP was also used to assess potential climate change scenarios using data for the driest and most humid years. The mean annual recharge was 51 mm for the driest year and 99 mm for the most humid year. Differences in the spatial distribution of recharge for the predictive scenarios indicate that the areas most sensitive to climate change correspond to the preferential recharge areas.