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research program 4

salinity mapping and hazard assessment

Next generation Central West NSW Groundwater Flow Systems

Project Leader : John Wilford, Geoscience Australia

Start date and duration: May 2006 to June 2008

Participants : Geoscience Australia, working in multi-agency team with NSW Dept Natural Resources and Central West Catchment Management Authority

Brief project description :

The central aim of this project is to develop a new generation of GFS maps and data layers for salinity management in dryland landscapes. Initial products show considerable promise in adding value to existing GFS constructs. The wrap-up phase of this project, which involves a partnership with the Central West CMA and NSW State Agencies, will focus on:

  1. Completing multi-scaled GFS maps over the Central West catchment. The GFS construct incorporates new approaches in terrain analysis, ga mma-ray modelling and landscape models. These products will have immediate application in being used to manage salinity in Central-West NSW, while the products will act as demonstration products for application in similar landscapes.
  2. Working with NSW State agencies and the Central West CMA to test the value-adding capacity of models and data layers in Salt 2C salt balance models.

The final stage of the project in 2007-08 involves carrying out sensitivity analysis of the new regolith datasets and models. This entails incorporating these data layers in Salt 2C models (to be carried out under contract by NSW State agencies). The project team will then workshop the results across the 3 relevant CMAs in NSW, while the data and workshop materials will also feed into a workshop at ISF08. Products developed will be developed for web-based delivery.


Scientific Deliverables (new scientific advances)

1. The GFS and associated thematic datasets will under pin new more robust hydrological modelling, and will be used to support targeted salinity management interventions at sub-catchment or whole-of-catchment scales.

2. A report documenting the controls on regolith distribution and variability within the Central West catchment.

3. Sensitivity analysis of datasets in 2C Salt models

4. Development of workshop materials, and holding of regional workshops for NSW CMAs

5. Publication of results in the ISF conference proceedings


Expected impacts of research (outcomes):

  • It is the intention that this new series of maps will replace existing GFS frameworks and salt balance models used by land mangers and scientists to manage salinity.
  • The new constructs and data layers will be used within hydrological broader NRM models to inform decision making and investment decisions.
  • Participation in a regional or national workshop to explore the directions for future GFS work.
  • Key impact will be new robust methodology/product to value add the existing GFS. The technique is likely to have much broader application throughout upland landscapes in Australia.
  • Publications: GFS+ implications for natural resource management Maps: Next generation GFS These products will initially be published as LEME reports with a journal paper (Hydrological Processes) published in the final year of LEME.

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