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Article

Hydrostratigraphic Framework and Physicochemical Status of Groundwater in the Gioia Tauro Coastal Plain (Calabria—Southern Italy)

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Department of Biology, Ecology and Earth Sciences (DIBEST), University of Calabria, Via Ponte Bucci 4, Cubo 15B, 87036 Rende, Italy
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E3 (Earth, Environment, Engineering) Soc.Coop. (University of Calabria), Via Ponte Bucci, Cubo 15B, 87036 Rende, Italy
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Department of Earth Sciences, University of Florence, Via G. La Pira 4, 50121 Firenze, Italy
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CNR-IGG Institute of Geosciences and Earth Resources, Via G. La Pira 4, 50121 Firenze, Italy
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Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Via di Vigna Murata 605, 00143 Rome, Italy
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CNR-IRPI, National Research Council, Research Institute for Hydrogeological Protection, Via Amendola 122 I, 70126 Bari, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Chin H Wu
Water 2021, 13(22), 3279; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13223279
Received: 21 October 2021 / Revised: 15 November 2021 / Accepted: 16 November 2021 / Published: 19 November 2021
In this study, we analysed the Gioia Tauro Plain (Tyrrhenian coast, southern Italy) in terms of hydrostratigraphy and the physicochemical status of groundwater. We investigated the hydrostratigraphic framework of the area identifying a deep aquifer (made by late Miocene succession), an aquitard (consisting of Pliocene clayey and silty deposits) and a shallow aquifer (including Late Pleistocene and Holocene marine and alluvial sediments) using subsoil data (boreholes and geophysics). Our reconstruction showed that the structural geology controls the spatial pattern of the aquitard top and the shallow aquifer thickness. Furthermore, we evaluated the hydraulic conductivity for the shallow aquifer using an empirical method, calibrated by slug tests, obtaining values ranging from 10−4 to 10−5 m/s with a maximum of 10−3 m/s located close to inland dune fields. The piezometric level of the shallow aquifer recorded a significant drop between the 1970s and 2021 (−35 m as the worst value). It is the effect of climate and soil use changes, the latter being the increased water demand for kiwi cultivation. Despite the overexploitation of the shallow aquifer, shallow groundwater is fresh (736 µS/cm as mean electrical conductivity) except for a narrow coastal area where the electrical conductivity is more than 1500 µS/cm, which can be due to the seawater intrusion. What was more complex was the physicochemical status of the deep aquifer characterised by high temperature (up to 25.8 °C) and electrical conductivity up to 10,520 µS/cm along the northern and southern plain boundaries marked by tectonic structures. This issue suggested the dominant role of the local fault system that is likely affecting the deep groundwater flow and its chemical evolution. View Full-Text
Keywords: Gioia Tauro Plain; groundwater; hydrostratigraphic framework; seawater intrusion; physicochemical status; warm waters Gioia Tauro Plain; groundwater; hydrostratigraphic framework; seawater intrusion; physicochemical status; warm waters
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MDPI and ACS Style

Cianflone, G.; Vespasiano, G.; De Rosa, R.; Dominici, R.; Apollaro, C.; Vaselli, O.; Pizzino, L.; Tolomei, C.; Capecchiacci, F.; Polemio, M. Hydrostratigraphic Framework and Physicochemical Status of Groundwater in the Gioia Tauro Coastal Plain (Calabria—Southern Italy). Water 2021, 13, 3279. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13223279

AMA Style

Cianflone G, Vespasiano G, De Rosa R, Dominici R, Apollaro C, Vaselli O, Pizzino L, Tolomei C, Capecchiacci F, Polemio M. Hydrostratigraphic Framework and Physicochemical Status of Groundwater in the Gioia Tauro Coastal Plain (Calabria—Southern Italy). Water. 2021; 13(22):3279. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13223279

Chicago/Turabian Style

Cianflone, Giuseppe, Giovanni Vespasiano, Rosanna De Rosa, Rocco Dominici, Carmine Apollaro, Orlando Vaselli, Luca Pizzino, Cristiano Tolomei, Francesco Capecchiacci, and Maurizio Polemio. 2021. "Hydrostratigraphic Framework and Physicochemical Status of Groundwater in the Gioia Tauro Coastal Plain (Calabria—Southern Italy)" Water 13, no. 22: 3279. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13223279

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