An attempt to explain the disappearance and decline in discharge rate of selected karst springs of the Opole region.

Stanisław Staśko


Significant discharge changes of karst springs, to the point of their disappearance, prompt research into the causes as related both to climate change and to human-induced factors. This analysis uses climate data from the last 70 years, publications from the beginning of the 20th century, biennial measurements of the discharge rate of six selected springs over the last 40 years, and considerations of mine drainage. An increase in average air temperature by 1.5°C in the last 30 years, a slight decrease in precipitation and an almost quadrupled increase in groundwater extraction in mines were recognised. Such a significant increase in mine-related groundwater extraction significantly affects the springs’ discharge rate and the river network. Significant mine drainage and groundwater extraction are causing deleterious  changes to previously good-quality groundwater.


springs, karst, discharge change, climate and its variability, mine dewatering, groundwater

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