Africa is becoming more and more water scarce due to diminishing water resources as a result population growth, urbanization and rising standards of living across the continent; while at the same time catchment degradation and poor waste management continue to reduce freshwater availability. Increased development activities in petroleum, mining, industry and agriculture will exert further stresses on the already limited resources. Surface water resources are becoming increasingly scarce as the impact of climate change and catchment degradation has begun to take effect. Groundwater is an important water resource for the development in many arid and semi-arid regions in Africa including Kenya. Therefore, there is need to conduct more studies on groundwater to promote efficient management, conservation and protection policies. One of the key mandates of RCGW is to carry out research in groundwater resources management to support these policies in Kenya. The main projects that support these policies involve undertaking regional mapping of groundwater resources, assessment and identification of groundwater recharge areas and characterization of aquifer systems. This is done through:
Hydrogeological and Geophysical Survey:
Survey and analysis of geophysical observations and measurements as basic data for understanding groundwater occurrence.
Survey and analysis of river discharge and river gauge heights as basic data for determining surface water dynamics.
Hydrochemical Sampling & Analysis:
Sampling and analysis of chemical and isotopic properties of water as basic data for determining water quality.
Mapping of Groundwater Resources:
Generating a groundwater potential map has a significant effect to enhance the sustainable management of groundwater resources. RCGW is well equipped with state-of-the-art systems and GIS tools to support the process of data collection, database management, data protection, spatial modelling, generation of maps and reports to guide in decision making for integrated water resources management and policy making for planning in the development and management of groundwater resources in the country. We believe in the power of geospatial tools and the fact that GIS has great role for effectively addressing groundwater exploration and delineating potential areas in a certain region of study. Extensive use of remote sensing satellite images along with ground truth data has also made it easier for us to provide the baseline information for delineating groundwater potential zones in different regions of the country.