Sep 6, 2018 | 12:00 am

NADEL | Zürich

The Swiss Water Partnership is organizing a Learning Event on the Assessment of Surface and Ground Water” for its members.

The SWP is organizing an internal learning event on the topic of assessment of surface and groundwater. This one-day event will take place on 6. September 2018 in Zurich (NADEL | Clausiusstrasse 37, Zürich, Switzerland).

Targeted participants: any SWP member willing to gain additional concrete knowledge on groundwater recharge, surface water measurement, quality issues (assessment of major parameters as well, mapping of geogenic contamination). An inspiring plenary will end the event to discuss the concrete use of these tools in the field.

Date and Time: 6th September 201 | 09:00 am

Where: NADEL, Center for Development and Cooperation, Building CLD, Clausiusstrasse 37, 8092 Zürich Link:

Cost: CHF 90.00

Half-Day participation is possible!

Additional Document: Program + Speakers

Registration Modalities: When registering for the event, please indicate your 1 and 2. choice for the breakout sessions.

Deadline for registration: 27th July 2018.


Breakout Session Description

Break-out sessions on the topic of “Water quantification and mapping”

Break-out session: Measuring discharge in channels and rivers using a smart-phone App.

In many places of the world there is few data or no data at all regarding water discharge. This greatly restrains any effort towards effective water resources management, especially in places where the water resources are scarce, highly variable and where strong growth in water demand overlap with administration underfunding. There is a need of cheaper and easy-to-use methods for gathering data regarding how much water is flowing in natural rivers and in man-made irrigation furrows. We have developed a mobile device application for determining open-channel discharge in e.g. rivers, artificial channels and irrigation furrows. Discharge measurement via smartphones provides a non-intrusive, accurate and cost-effective monitoring method. This break-out will show how to set-up a site and how to use the Discharge App and its associated data management platform.

Break-out session: Methods to estimate recharge, case study Chad

In arid and semi-arid regions, recharge is a fundamental parameter that should be estimated before developing any sustainable management plan for the exploitation of water resources. The main source of recharge is rainfall; other sources of recharge are from river flows (perennial, seasonal, ephemeral), neighbouring aquifers, or from anthropogenic activities such as irrigation (canals, fields) and urban settlements. Direct and diffuse recharge from precipitation is the more readily determined source. Water balance methods and the use of remote sensing to represent the temporal and spatial variabilities of precipitation are nowadays common approaches, having been successfully implemented in many parts of the world (Brunner et al., 2004). But in arid and semi-arid lands, direct recharge becomes less important than indirect and localized recharge in terms of total aquifer replenishment (Gee and Hillel, 1988, Stephens, 1994, Wood and Sandford, 1995), which increases the complexity of the methodological approach. Also, in such regions, recharge generally occurs with a high temporal and spatial variability, characterized by infrequent large recharge events. The most common methods to estimate recharge are direct measurements of groundwater level variations, which require decades worth of monitoring data that are often unavailable in developing countries, or indirect, physical approaches, such as water balance, Darcy flux measurements and tracers (e.g., Cl, stable isotopes, 3H and 36Cl). The project’s objective dictates whether multiple “at-point” or area-based estimation methods are the most appropriate, but as a general rule a combination of methods (remote sensing, GIS, conceptual models, Darcian and tracer’s methods), coupled to the necessary component of field measurements, seem the best way to realistically investigate recharge processes (Simmers, 1997). This breakout session will discuss about several methods for estimating recharge. Many examples from our research in Chad will be given and we will discuss on the benefit of combining remote sensing products and the sampling of groundwater for a chemical and stable isotopic characterization (Vogt et al., forthcoming), enabling the identification of zones that still receive significant modern recharge.

Breakout sessions on the topic of “Assessing water quality”

Breakout session: Water analysis portable lab

The « Laboratory Session » will focus on water quality, setting priorities in the choice of parameters to be analysed in the field and involving participants in a “hands-on” exercise. Participants will benefit of a 20 min lecture on water quality for based the “WHO Guidelines for drinking water quality” and a full hour for measuring hands-on few important parameters using the portable laboratory designed by the Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit, such as faecal contamination (standard bacteriological analysis), turbidity, free residual chlorine, small physics-chemical parameters (Cl, No3, No2, NH4, Fe, Hardness, conductivity, pH and others).

Challenges of geogenic contamination, an introduction to the EAWAG GAP platform

The following functionality and features of the GAP online platform ( will be demonstrated: (a) viewing and printing global and regional arsenic and fluoride hazard maps and data sets of related variables, (b) uploading, analyzing and sharing data in a secure environment and (c) modeling one’s own data, which can then be used to create a prediction map that be downloaded as a raster file. Users are encouraged to bring their own laptops and data to work with, such as GIS files or Excel tables with columns of latitude, longitude and some quantity (e.g. measured pollutant concentrations). Note that GAP can also be used for contaminants other than arsenic or fluoride.

Event location: NADEL, Clausiusstrasse 37, , Zürich, Switzerland

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