IAH-BGID Activities at IAH 2017

IAH-BGID Special Session: The role of groundwater in reducing poverty

Groundwater plays a fundamental, although often underestimated, role in poverty alleviation. In many areas worldwide it represents the primary safe source of water for domestic supply and agriculture supporting livelihoods and lifting many out of poverty.  However, the hidden nature of groundwater often hampers its effective management and protection which can threaten the sustainably and quality of supplies.  Therefore, for the benefits of groundwater abstraction to be sustained there is a need to better explore the links between groundwater availability and quality, climate change, and groundwater-dependent livelihoods.

The session will discuss (1) the role of groundwater and hydrogeological sciences in poverty reduction and contributing to achieving SDG 6 (Clean Water and Sanitation); (2) linking social and hydrogeological sciences to address the emerging challenges in the poorest regions of the world; (3) current and future challenges in improving the understanding of groundwater in poor regions worldwide; (4) groundwater outreach and governance in poorer regions.

Successful case studies and practical hydrogeological applications will be presented together with new multidisciplinary frameworks to tackle emerging groundwater issues in low income countries.

Convenors: Alan MacDonald and Viviana Re (IAH-BGID)

Room and Date: TBD

IAH-BGID Annual General Meeting 2017

The meeting will be held on
Monday 25 from 17.00 to 19.00 in room KOKPIT

Anyone interested in network activities is invited to join!

IAH Book Exchange

book-exchange2IAH-BGID will contribute to the book exchanges organized by the IAH Secretariat and the ECHN.
During the congress, at a specific time to be decided, delegates will be invited to select a free book from those displayed at the IAH stand. So far we have had many satisfied (and a few disappointed) recipients, so we would urge members coming to France to look out groundwater-related books which they (or their colleagues along the corridor) no longer require and bring them to donate for the exchange.
Almost everything was taken by grateful colleagues last year, so please find some space in your suitcase to bring along some books you no longer need for our free book exchange! We look forward to your support to make this a success again.

BGID Free Book Scheme

The IAH BGID is pleased to announce the launch of its free book scheme for 2016.  The aim of this scheme is to increase access to hydrogeological books for IAH members in Africa where it is difficult to obtain reference books, or reliably access the web.  We had similar schemes in previous years which proved highly successful.  We are currently look for volunteers to help manage the scheme.  Consistently one of the more rewarding activities BGID carries out!

Africa Groundwater Atlas

The new online Africa Groundwater Atlas is an introduction to the groundwater resources of 51 African countries, and a gateway to further information.

The British Geological Survey has developed the Africa Groundwater Atlas in partnership with the International Association of Hydrogeologists (IAH) Burdon Groundwater Network for Developing Countries, and with more than 50 collaborating groundwater experts across Africa.

africa_hgcl_envsFor each of 51 African countries, the Africa Groundwater Atlas provides new overview geology and hydrogeology maps and summaries of the key geological environments and aquifers in each country. There are sections on groundwater status, use and management, including groundwater monitoring, with up to date information on the national organisations involved in groundwater development and management. There is supporting material on geographical setting, climate, surface water, soil and land cover, with accompanying maps; and finally, there are references and links to more detailed information for those wishing to find out more.

The successful, sustainable development of groundwater resources is critical to future safe water supplies in Africa, and to economic and social improvement and food security across the continent. This depends on a good understanding of groundwater and hydrogeology. But too often, high quality information about groundwater in Africa – even where it exists – is hard to find. The Africa Groundwater Atlas will help tackle this by increasing awareness and availability of information about groundwater in Africa, in individual countries and at a continental scale.

Also available is the Africa Groundwater Literature Archive, which enables users to search (geographically and by keyword) and freely access thousands of articles, reports and other documents about African groundwater.

The Africa Groundwater Atlas is still being developed. Some of the pages still have limited information, and for many others there may be more details to be added or updates to be made. If you have, or know of, information or resources that could help us improve the Atlas, please get in touch!

More information:

The Africa Groundwater Atlas was developed as part of the UPGro programme – Unlocking the Potential of Groundwater for the Poor. UPGro is funded by UK Aid; the UK Natural Environment Research Council (NERC); and the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC).

The Africa Groundwater Atlas and Literature Archive are here and for more information and to get involved, please contact Brighid Ó Dochartaigh.

IAH-BGID Activities at IAH congresses

IAH 2016 – Montpelier, France

Other activities

Since 2013 the Network strengthened its links with the African Groundwater Network (AGW-NET), RWSN, Hydrogeologists’ Without Borders (HWB) and IAH’s own Early Career Hydrogeologist’s Network (ECHN). The Burdon Fund was used to part support participants to two groundwater management courses for river basin staff, organised by AGW-NET and held in Bamako (Mali) and Porto Novo (Benin) and a number of the course facilitators were IAH members. We have worked with RWSN to provide IAH contributions to their webinars and email discussions, and our links with HWB will enable IAH to provide technical advice and groundwater knowledge and experience to help answer requests that HWB receives.  We have sponsored sessions at IAH congress in Marrakesh and Rome on groundwater and poverty reduction and provided support for hydrogeologists from developing countries to attend.

The Network never forgets its members and colleagues in the Sub-Saharan Region, many of whom can feel quite professionally isolated.  One of our most appreciated activities has been the distribution of hydrogeological books to IAH members in the region.  We are always available to provide advice to individuals and support for the establishment of new IAH chapters in the region.