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QUO VADIS LJUBLJANA'S WATER RESOURCES?

IWRA World Water Congress 2003 Madrid Spain
IWRA WWC2003 - default topic
Author(s): Branka BRA Č I Č -éELEZNIK 1
Brigita JAMNIK 2

1 Vodovod-Kanalizacija Public Utility d.o.o, Vodovodna cesta 90,1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia, e-mail:bzeleznik@vo-ka.si
2 Vodovod-Kanalizacija Public Utility d.o.o, Vodovodna cesta 90, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia, e-mail:bjamnik@vo-ka.si



Keyword(s): Groundwater, drinking water, pollution, land use, aquifer, protection zones, groundwater quality, groundwater monitoring
Article:

Abstract

Water supply for the city of Ljubljana has been based on groundwater exploitation since 1890. There is plenty of good quality water in the underground reservoirs and the exploitation of this resource has been developed and extended while the number of inhabitants and water consumption rose. Most of the practical problems that we face today with the on-site management of drinking water sources and distribution of healthy drinking water, originate from past actions, interventions and political decisions.  

The environment has the essential role as a medium where the water is present. Point and dispersed sources of pollution are the result of many different human activities. The main threats to drinking water sources are anthropological. Groundwater vulnerability is increased and environmental responses are altered by human interventions to environmental structures and dynamics. Each activity or intervention changes the elementary environment, but the impacts differ according to different single components and the endangering of drinking water sources varies spatially.

The management of groundwater in urban, industrial and agricultural areas requires professional knowledge and the ability to take immediate action in case of accidents and malfunctions. For this purpose a mathematical model of groundwater flow has been developed for better drinking water exploitation and protection. The task of the model is to help the groundwater manager to better understand the dynamics of the system. The development of mathematical models begins with the schematic understanding of the physical system that we want to model. The knowledge of hydrogeology, hydrology and groundwater flow dynamics in the area of interest is the most important phase of modelling and, subsequently, managing the drinking water sources.

The Municipality of Ljubljana is responsible for the protection of local water sources as well as for establishing and maintaining the water supply system for its residents. The Vodovod-Kanalizacija Public Utility (VO-KA) is responsible for water supply to the city residents,
including the management, surveillance and maintenance of the water supply system.

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