Salinization of the coastal aquifers via seawater intrusion is the most challenging for groundwater quality assessment in the coastal areas. In the eastern province (EP) of Saudi Arabia, the multi-layered carbonate aquifers (Neogene, Dammam, and Umm Er Radhma) are considered as the main source of fresh water in the coastal cities (e.g. Dammam, Khobar, Al-Qatif) for multi-purposes for decades. The heavy use of groundwater in the coastal areas increased the aquifer vulnerability for seawater intrusion. In this study, hydrochemistry and isotopes approaches will be used to define the impact of seawater on the quality of the multi-layer aquifer system in the eastern coastal areas of Saudi Arabia. This will be followed by a hydrogeophysical survey (electrical resistivity and electromagnetic survey) to delineate the extent of seawater intrusion. In-situ measurement of groundwater salinity in each aquifer with different depth and geographic extent will be used to establish salinity profiles and maps for salinity variability in the coastal areas. Based on salinity maps, Hydrochemical and isotopes analysis will be conducted on collected samples from wells penetrating different aquifers and located within different geographic locations (close and far from the Arabian gulf). The sampling survey will be conducted along transects from land toward the sea in several locations in the coastal area. The result of the salinity will be mapped and compared with hydrochemistry and isotopic results to define the extent of seawater intrusion and salinity hot spot zones. The hydrogeophysics survey will be conducted to obtain the subsurface extent of the seawater intrusion in the selected saline zones. Ultimately, all data will be integrated to delineate the freshwater-saltwater interface.
|Effective start/end date||17/03/22 → 17/03/23|
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