As well as considering the potential groundwater resources we are considering potential constraints to groundwater abstraction. These include: an assessment of the impact of groundwater abstraction on a groundwater body scale in the individual catchment; protected areas, groundwater chemistry and quality, impact of climate change.
We are replicating the EPA's WFD Groundwater Quantitative Status Water Balance test. The methodology and relevant thresholds are described in this EPA document.
Regulations (Government of Ireland, 2018) establishing a national register of abstractions were enacted in 2018 meaning all abstractions >25 m3/d must be registered with the EPA. All abstractions registered with the EPA are included in this assessment. A water balance test is done on a Groundwater Body scale to provide an assessment of the impact of groundwater abstraction on the GWB.
A total abstraction volume (m3/d) and total recharge (m3/d) to the GWB is calculated and a percentage of the recharge abstracted is determined. Threshold for groundwater bodies at risk of not achieving quantitative objectives under the Water Framework Directive can be seen in the following table.