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Obras y proyectos

On-line version ISSN 0718-2813


ARUMI, José Luis; RIVERA, Diego; MUNOZ, Enrique  and  BILLIB, Max. Interactions between groundwater and surface water in the Bío Bío region of Chile. Obras y Proyectos [online]. 2012, n.12, pp.4-13. ISSN 0718-2813.

The geological processes that formed the central zone of Chile produced the conditions which favour the existence of important interactions between the surface water and groundwater systems. While these interactions are characteristic features in the Central Zone of Chile, they are not adequately understood by water users, who still maintain an old paradigm of considering surface systems as separate elements from the underground systems, a situation that has led to many conflicts in the management of water resources in the area. In order to illustrate the different types of interactions in central Chile, this paper presents study cases performed in the Bío Bío Region of Chile, which identifies and explains these interactions by geological analyses and hydrological model applications. Three case studies are presented: i) the upper area of Diguillín river and its relation to the lack of water in the Renegado valley, ii) the Cato river area and its production limitation by high groundwater levels, and iii) the effect of the Arenas del Laja formation in the basin water balance. After presenting these case studies it is emphasized that the use of simple models such as the transposition offlood flows or the assumption ofconstant specificflows, may give erroneous results when there are basins where geological conditions cause significant diversion of groundwater.

Keywords : water availability; Andean watersheds; groundwater and surface water interaction.

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