Groundwater: from quantity to quality

Groundwater is a widely used commodity: in France, it accounts for almost two thirds of the drinking water consumed and is widely used in the agricultural and industrial sectors. However, pressures from surface activities can lead to pollution or mixing of non-usable water in aquifers. All these factors mean that a sophisticated strategy is needed to protect and manage the resource in a sustainable way.
11 June 2021
Cover of the press kit

Cover of the press kit.

© BRGM

How France monitors its groundwater

Over the decades, researchers have developed extensive knowledge of the French subsurface. Today, the country has a range of measuring instruments that provide a very comprehensive view of the quantitative and chemical status of groundwater. The French Geological Survey (BRGM) is in charge of coordinating and exploiting these huge amounts of data.

A resource exposed to pressure from surface activities

In many countries, particularly in France, groundwater supply accounts for a very significant proportion of drinking water and water used for agricultural or industrial purposes. However, the pressures exerted by human activities on the resources lead to pollution or mixing of non-usable water in the aquifers. All of these factors mean that a sophisticated strategy is needed to protect and manage the resource in a sustainable way.

Laboratory innovation is a necessity

The laboratories are an essential part of BRGM's activity and expertise. Initially dedicated to the analysis of minerals for mineral prospecting, the instrumentation has been increasingly used for environmental purposes since the 1990s.

Groundwater: from quantity to quality