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Open AccessArticle

Evaluation of Groundwater Potential and Safe Yield of Heterogeneous Unconsolidated Aquifers in Chiang Mai Basin, Northern Thailand

1
Department of Geological Sciences, Faculty of Science, Chiang Mai University, 239 Huaykaew Rd., Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand
2
Department of Mathematics, Faculty of Science, Chiang Mai University, 239 Huaykaew Rd., Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand
3
Centre of Excellence in Mathematics, CHE, Si Ayutthaya Rd., Bangkok 10400, Thailand
4
Advanced Research Center for Computational Simulation (ARCCoS), Chiang Mai University, 239 Huaykaew Rd., Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand
5
Environmental Science Research Center (ESRC), Chiang Mai University, 239 Huaykaew Rd., Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Aldo Fiori
Water 2021, 13(4), 558; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13040558
Received: 19 January 2021 / Revised: 15 February 2021 / Accepted: 16 February 2021 / Published: 22 February 2021
Chiang Mai basin has an escalating population growth resulting in high demand for water consumption. Lack of surface water supply in most parts of the basin gives rise to the increasing use of groundwater which leads to a continuous decline in groundwater level in the past decades. This study is the first long-term groundwater monitoring and modeling study that aims at developing a transient, regional groundwater flow model of heterogeneous unconsolidated aquifers based on the MODFLOW program. Long-term groundwater monitoring data from 49 piezometers were used in model calibration and validation. The pilot points technique was used to account for the spatial variability of hydrogeologic parameters of heterogeneous aquifers. The simulation results and statistics showed that most sensitive and significant model parameters were spatially variable hydraulic conductivities and recharge rates. The Chiang Mai basin’s unconsolidated aquifers do not have high potential. The water table and/or potentiometric surface in the southeast and southwest areas of Chiang Mai city were continuously decreasing with no sign of recovery indicating critical groundwater condition and careful management must be considered. Safe yield calculation, based on a 2-m average drawdown threshold, suggested that unconsolidated aquifers of the Chiang Mai basin can sustain overall abstraction rates up to 51.2 Mm3/y or approximately 214% of the current extraction rates. View Full-Text
Keywords: Chiang Mai groundwater basin; MODFLOW; groundwater model; groundwater recharge; groundwater potential Chiang Mai groundwater basin; MODFLOW; groundwater model; groundwater recharge; groundwater potential
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MDPI and ACS Style

Taweelarp, S.; Khebchareon, M.; Saenton, S. Evaluation of Groundwater Potential and Safe Yield of Heterogeneous Unconsolidated Aquifers in Chiang Mai Basin, Northern Thailand. Water 2021, 13, 558. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13040558

AMA Style

Taweelarp S, Khebchareon M, Saenton S. Evaluation of Groundwater Potential and Safe Yield of Heterogeneous Unconsolidated Aquifers in Chiang Mai Basin, Northern Thailand. Water. 2021; 13(4):558. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13040558

Chicago/Turabian Style

Taweelarp, Sutthipong; Khebchareon, Morrakot; Saenton, Schradh. 2021. "Evaluation of Groundwater Potential and Safe Yield of Heterogeneous Unconsolidated Aquifers in Chiang Mai Basin, Northern Thailand" Water 13, no. 4: 558. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13040558

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