Managed Aquifer Recharge within the Greater Kruger National Park and Implementation of Recharge Scheme

West of the world-renowned conservation site, Kruger National Park, lies the larger extent of the Greater Kruger National Park within the Limpopo province. Boreholes have been drilled for decades to provide water to game lodges, large resorts, and watering holes for game viewing and livestock. The area contains both primary and secondary aquifers classified as having yields between 0.5 and 5.0 l/s, based on the geological setting, which consists of gneiss intruded by dolerite dyke swarms. A geohydrological assessment revealed that groundwater quality within the project area has an EC of 100 - 350 mS/m, linked to borehole proximity to surface water systems. The Makhutswi Gneiss and Doleritic Dyke swarms are the major controlling geology of the area, with higher-yielding boreholes close to dykes and major structural lineaments (faulted / weathered zones). A concern identified through geohydrological assessment observations is that boreholes frequently dry up after a few years, requiring deeper drilling/redrilling or drilling a new borehole. Aggressive calcium hardness in the water frequently damages equipment and increases maintenance costs. This project investigated the feasibility of increasing recharge to the aquifer with seasonal flooding/rainfall events by constructing artificially enhanced recharge locations overlaying doleritic dykes. This is expected to decrease the groundwater’s salinity and hardness, reducing operational costs. This pre-feasibility assessment has been completed, and the project has continued through a gradual implementation phase.

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South Africa
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