Factors influencing chloride deposition in a coastal hilly area and application to chloride deposition mapping
- 1School of the Environment, Flinders University, Australia
- 2National Centre for Groundwater Research and Training, Australia
- 3Department of Land, Water, and Biodiversity Conservation, South Australia
- 4Department of Mathematics, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, USA
- 5Water Technology Division, Water Corporation, West Australia
Abstract. Chloride is commonly used as an environmental tracer for studying water flow and solute transport in the environment. It is especially useful for estimating groundwater recharge based on the commonly used chloride mass balance (CMB) method. Strong spatial variability in chloride deposition in coastal areas is one difficulty encountered in appropriately applying the method. A high-resolution bulk chloride deposition map in the coastal region is thus needed. The aim of this study is to construct a chloride deposition map in the Mount Lofty Ranges (MLR), a coastal hilly area of approximately 9000 km2 spatial extent in South Australia. We examined geographic (related to coastal distance), orographic, and atmospheric factors that may influence chloride deposition, using partial correlation and regression analyses. The results indicate that coastal distance, elevation, as well as terrain aspect and slope, appear to be significant factors controlling chloride deposition in the study area. Coastal distance accounts for 70% of spatial variability in bulk chloride deposition, with elevation, terrain aspect and slope an additional 15%. The results are incorporated into a de-trended residual kriging model (ASOADeK) to produce a 1 km×1 km resolution bulk chloride deposition and concentration maps. The average uncertainty of the deposition map is about 20–30% in the western MLR, and 40–50% in the eastern MLR. The maps will form a useful basis for examining catchment chloride balance for the CMB application in the study area.