Contact Us

For Marketing, Sales and Subscriptions Inquiries
Rockefeller Center, 45 Rockefeller Plaza
20th Flr Unit #5, New York, NY 10111
United States

Conference List

International Journal of Hydrology Research

June 2020, Volume 5, 1, pp 17-31

Challenges of Groundwater Development for Towns and Big Cities Water Supply in Rift Valley Areas

Assefa E.


Tenalem A.


Tilahun A.

Assefa E. 1 ,

Tenalem A. 1 Tilahun A. 1 
  1. School of Earth Sciences, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. 1

Pages: 17-31

DOI: 10.18488/journal.108.2020.51.17.31

Share :

Article History:

Received: 25 June, 2020
Revised: 27 July, 2020
Accepted: 31 August, 2020
Published: 14 September, 2020


The experiences of the last 30 years developed an understanding in the Addis Ababa Water Utility that groundwater sources are not fully dependable for such a big city. Notwithstanding this, additional wells and well-fields are being developed especially in the last 10 years to meet the ever increasing demand. The Akaki well-field was initially designed for an abstraction rate of up to 35,000 m3/day for 20 years until 2020 though the current abstraction rate is nearly ten-fold. The current developments are only demand driven irrespective of safe and sustainable utilization. What is making things worse is the rise of other water competing demands for irrigation projects in adjacent well-fields. The present water supply coverage of the Addis Ababa city is not more than 50%. The situation in other urban centers in the Upper Awash basin is not different. Conceptual modelling, time series well water level measurements and operational assessments showed that the aquifer systems are not uniform and dotted with many volcanic flow barriers; there is sharp decline of water table (up to 70 meters since 2000) in some well-fields and the decline is propagating upstream of the Akaki well-field. Moreover, the excessive and uncontrolled pumping is impacting regional groundwater table. Topographic and technical issues are hampering upstream water distribution, and the once exemplary hundreds of wells are now abandoned. The frequent tapping of thermal and high fluoride water is another complication. Unless proper intervention is devised, grave environmental problems are likely to come in the near future.
Contribution/ Originality
This study is one of the few studies which investigated the time series well water evolutions in the Upper Awash and Akaki catchments and well water operational difficulty in Akaki catchment.


Uncontrolled pumping, Conceptual model, Time series water level, Wellfield.


[1]          Central Statically Agency of Ethiopia, "Demographics, maps and graphs. Retrieved from:, " 2020.

[2]          AAWSA, "Addis Ababa water and sewerage authority," Quarterly Report2020.

[3]          AAWSA, "Addis Ababa water and sewerage authority," Annual Report2010.

[4]          AE-HBT, "AGRA-associated engineering," Review of Feasibility Study and Preliminary Design Report, Water Supply Project Stage III. Executive Summary. AAWSA April1993.

[5]          AE-HBT, "AGRA-associated HBT Agra joint venture," Hydrogeology of Akaki Wellfield (Area D and D extension). AAWSA1998.

[6]          BCEOM–- SEURECA SPACE JV, "Modelling of akaki wellfield," Addis Ababa Water Supply Project Stage III A –  Groundwater Phase II. Final Report2000.

[7]          BCEOM–- SEURECA SPACE JV, "Akaki wellfiled groundwater model draft rept," Addis Ababa Water Supply Project Stage III A – Groundwater Phase II2002.

[8]          Geo-matrix, "Hydrogeological and geophysical study for 50 wells project in Addis Ababa," 2007.

[9]          Seureca, "Feasibility study and preliminary design, detailed Report, volume 4 groundwater resource," AAWSA1991.

[10]        TAHAL, "Consulting engineers ltd. In association with SHAWEL consult international," Akaki Water Supply Project. Feasibility Study; Volume II; Annexes. AAWSA, May1992.

[11]        Water Works Design and Supervision Enterprise, "Adaa-becho groundwater  resource  evaluation  for  irrigation," Unpublished Report, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 2008.

[12]        Water Works Design and Supervision Enterprise, "Hydrological analysis final feasibility Report for Addis Ababa water supply project within 100 km radius," 2017.

[13]        Y. Andarge, "Hydrogeological and hydro chemical framework of Upper Awash River Basin," Ethiopia: With Special Emphasis on Inter-basins Groundwater Transfer Between Blue Nile and Awash Rivers, 2009. A PhD Thesis Submitted to University of poitiers, Department of Hydrogeology, 40 Avenue du Recteur Pineau, 86022 Poitiers, France, 2009.

[14]        B. Behailu, "Evaluation of the water supply systems of Addis Ababa and its environs using WEAP and MODFLOW coupled with linkKitchen," A PhD Thesis Submitted to The School of Earth Sciences, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia, 2017.

[15]        M. Birhanu, "Hydrogeology of the upper awash upstream of Koka Dam," Ministry of Mines and Enegry, Ethiopian Institute of Geolgical Survey. Note No. 1711982.

[16]        A. Tilahun, "Groundwater dynamics in the left bank catchments of the middle Blue Niile and the Upper Awash River basins," Central Ethiopia, A PhD Thesis Submitted to The School of Earth Sciences, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia, 2015.

[17]        G. Berhanu, "The origin of high bicarbonate and fluoride concentrations in waters of the main Ethiopian Rift Valley, East African Rift system," Journal of African Earth Sciences, vol. 22, pp. 391-402, 1996.Available at:

[18]        B. Efrem, "Geology of the Akaki Beseka area," Ministry of Mines, Geological Survey of Ethiopia, Basic Geoscience Mapping Core Process2010.

[19]        A. Tsegaye and F. Mazarini, "The yerer-tulu wellel extensional structures: Evidences from remote sensing, petrologic and geochronological data," Central Ethiopia- Institute of Geological Survey, Unpublished Report, Addis Ababa Ethiopia1995.

[20]        A. Tsegaye, F. Mazarini, F. Innocenti, and P. Manneti, "The yerer –tulu wellel volcano-tectonic lineament: A transitional structure in central Ethiopia and the associated magmatic activity," Journal of Africa Earth Science, vol. 1, pp. 135-1150, 1997.

[21]        A. Tenalem, "Comparison of different base flow separation methods and drought vulnerability in the rift valley," Ethiopia, Journal of Spatial Hydrology, vol. 15, pp. 1-26, 2019.

[22]        J. Bredehoeft, "The conceptualization model problem—surprise," Hydrogeology Journal, vol. 13, pp. 37-46, 2005.Available at:

[23]        M. P. Anderson, W. W. Woessner, and R. J. Hunt, Applied groundwater modelling—simulation of flow and advective transport-second edition. UK, San Diego, USA and Waltham, USA: Academic Press, Imprint of Elsevier, 125 London Wall, 2015.

[24]        K. Seifu, Y. Travi, A. Asrat, T. Alemayehu, T. Ayenew, and Z. Tessema, "Groundwater origin and flow along selected transects in Ethiopian rift volcanic aquifers," HydJ, vol. 16, pp. 55-73, 2007.

[25]        P. A. Mohr and B. Zanettin, "The ethiopian flood basalt province: In; ‘continental flood basalt, J.D. Macdougall (Ed.)." vol. 63, ed Dordrecht: Kluwer, Acad. Publ, 1988.

[26]        A. Tadese, "Geological map of the Akaki area," Geological Survey of Ethiopia, Geoscience Information Center2008.

[27]        A. W. Harbaugh, E. R. Banta, M. C. Hill, and M. G. McDonald, "MODFLOW-2000, the U.S. Geological survey modular ground-water model—user guide to modularization concepts and the ground-water flow process: U.S," Geological Survey Open-File Report 00-92, 1212005.

[28]        R. Thomas and H. Waterloo, "Aquifer test V.3.5 user’s manual," Advanced Pumping Test and Slug Test Analysis Software2002.

[29]        I. Waterloo Hydrogeologic, "Aquifer test V.4.4 user’s manual," Advanced Pumping Test and Slug Test Analysis Software2011.


Google Scholor ideas Microsoft Academic Search bing Google Scholor


This study received no specific financial support.

Competing Interests:

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.


All authors contributed equally to the conception and design of the study.

Related Article

( 1 ) Challenges of Groundwater Development for Towns and Big Cities Water Supply in Rift Valley Areas
( 2 ) Challenges of Conserving and Co-Managing Khadimnagar National Park and Ratargul Fresh Water Swamp Forest in Bangladesh
( 4 ) Agricultural Dualism, Wage Inequality and Development Policies
( 5 ) Development of a Mathematical Model for Angle of Soil Failure Plane in Case of 3-Dimenssional Cutting
( 6 ) Social, Economical and Environmental Issues of Floriculture Sector Development in Ethiopia
( 7 ) Social, Economical and Environmental Issues of Floriculture Sector Development in Ethiopia
( 8 ) Application of Analytical Hierarchical Process (AHP) in Development of Suitability Model for Rice Production in Taraba State
( 10 ) Development of an Effective Biocatalyzed Organic Fertilizer Derived from Gliricidia Sepium Stem Biochar
( 11 ) Monte Carlo Modeling for Aflatoxin B1 Distribution in Pistachio Samples: A Prerequisite for Sampling Plan Validation
( 12 ) GGE and Ammi Biplot Analysis for Field PEA Yield Stability in Snnpr State, Ethiopia
( 13 ) Growing Jatropha Curcas and Jatropha Gossypiifolia as a Interculture with Sunflower for Control of Meloidogyne Javanica in Egypt
( 15 ) Evaluation of Field Pea (Pisum Sativum L) Genotypes Performance for Yield and Yield Components at Five Growing Environments of Southern Ethiopia
( 16 ) Effect of Disc and Tilt Angles of Disc Plough on Tractor Performance under Clay Soil
( 17 ) Diversity, Use Pattern and Management of Forest Resources in the Eastern Himalaya: A Case Study of Mizoram, India
( 18 ) Urban Area - Review of Protective Forest Management
( 19 ) Soil Respiration, Microbial Biomass and Ratios (Metabolic Quotient and Mbc/Toc) As Quality Soil Indicators in Burnt and Unburnt Aleppo Pine Forest Soils
( 20 ) Effects of Cotton Gin Trash Level on the Performance of Desert Lambs in New Halfa Area, Kassala State, Sudan
( 21 ) The Influence of Probiotics and Antibiotic Growth Promoter on Growth Performance and Hemato-Biochemical Parameters in Broilers
( 22 ) Evaluation of Some Cowpea (Vigna Unguiculata L. [Walp]) Genotypes for Stability Of Performance Over 4 Years
( 23 ) Comparative Growth Analysis and Yield Performance of Glycine Max under Jatropha Curcas Based Agrisilviculture System of Agroforestry in the Northern Part of Bangladesh
( 24 ) Key for First Recorded Dragonfly (Odonata: Anisoptera) Fauna of District Lower Dir, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan
( 25 ) Performance Evaluation and Adaptation of Lentil Varieties in Lemu, Gumur and Damot Gale Districts of Southern Ethiopia
( 26 ) Studies on Seasonal Performance of Newly Developed Bivoltine Silkworm (Bombyx Mori L) Hybrids Tolerant To Bmnpv and Effect of Temperature on Disease Induction
( 27 ) Effect of Whole Inedible Date and Amino Acid Supplementation on Growth Performance of Ross 308 Broiler Chicks
( 28 ) Profitability of Non-Timber Forest Products (NTFPS) Production and Marketing in Zuru Local Government Area, Kebbi State: A Case for Honey
( 29 ) Examination of Oribatid Mites for Cysticercoids of Moniezia Sp
( 30 ) Evaluation of In Vitro Protocols for Elimination of Banana Streak Virus from Tissue Cultured Explants in Banana Seedling Production
( 31 ) Partial Budgeting Analysis of Different Strategies for Management of Insect Pests in Cashew and Mango Orchards in Tanzania
( 32 ) Chemical Analysis of Acacia Ehrenbergiana (Salam) Tree Fruits (Seed and Pods) As Dry Season Supplement For Livestock in Arid and Semi –Arid Lands of Sudan
( 33 ) Genotype X Environment Interaction and Stability Analysis for Yield and Yield Related Traits of Desi-Type Chickpea (Cicer Arietinum L.) In Ethiopia
( 34 ) Effects of Dried Rumen Contents Level in Rations on the Performance of Shugor Desert Sheep in Halfa Elgadeda, Kassala State, Sudan
( 35 ) Estimation of Export Demand Function for Swazi Sugar: A Panel Data Analysis
( 36 ) Analysis of Consumer Willingness to Pay for Genetically Modified Maize Food in Swaziland
( 37 ) Application of Agroforestry Techniques in the Management of Bamboo
( 38 ) Hydrostatic and Hydrodynamic Characteristics of Swimming Animals- an Inspiration for Hybrid Buoyant Aircraft
( 39 ) “Evaluation of Phytochemical Constituents of the Fruits of Cucumis Sativus Linn. For their Hepatoprotective Activity by Molecular Docking Studies”
( 40 ) Rheological Studies of Texture-Modified Chicken Rendang with Tapioca and Sago Starches as Food Thickener for Patients with Dysphagia
( 41 ) Evaluation of the Biomass of the Green Oak (Quercus Rotundifolia) of the Central Middle Atlas: Case of the South Jbel Aoua Forest (Morocco)
( 42 ) Study on Agronomic Evaluation of Tomato (Lycopersicon Esculentum, Mill.) Varieties for Phonological, Growth and Yield Characters
( 43 ) Effect of Jameed Form on the Chemical Composition, Rheological and Microbial Properties
( 44 ) Analysis of Rural Youths Participation in Family Farming in Benue State, Nigeria: Implications for Policy
( 45 ) Performance of Multi-Purpose Cooperatives in the Shiselweni Region of Swaziland
( 46 ) Multi-Environment Variety Testing (Pre-Met) for Irrigated Ecosystem in Rice (Oryza Sativa L.)
( 47 ) A Suction Trap for Sampling Aphids and Aphidophagous Insects in Pecan Trees
( 48 ) Effects of Segregated Early Weaning at 7 Days on Dams Body Condition, Parturition Interval and Offspring Birth Weight and Litter Size in the Agouti (Dasyprocta Leporina) for Intensive Production
( 49 ) An Example of Non-Wood Forest Products in Turkey: Production of Pine Nuts
( 50 ) A New Activity in Turkey's Agricultural Forestry: Truffle Mushroom Cultivation
( 51 ) Heterosis for Nitrogen Fixation and Seed Yield and Yield Components in Chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.)
( 52 ) Evaluation of the Sustainability Criteria of Forest Management in the Municipality Palma Soriano, Santiago De Cuba Province
( 53 ) Prospects of Rural Youths Participation in Family Farming in Benue State, Nigeria: Implications for Policy
( 54 ) Variation of Wood Density in Tropical Rainforest Trees
( 55 ) Forest Ecosystem Service Valuation: A Case of the Kalika Community Forest, Dhading, Central Nepal
( 56 ) Performance Evaluation of Onion (Allium Cepa L.) Varieties at Benatsemay Woreda of South Omo Zone, Ethiopia
( 57 ) Forecasting Goat Milk Production in Turkey Using Artificial Neural Networks and Box-Jenkins Models
( 58 ) Performance of Growing Grasscutters Fed Diets with Varying Levels of Soybean Meal Replaced by Brewers Dried Grain
( 59 ) Uncertainty Analysis and Calibration of Swat Model for Estimating Impacts of Conservation Methods on Streamflow and Sediment Yield in Thika River Catchment, Kenya
( 60 ) Optimization of Elephant Foot Yam (Amorphophallus Paeoniifolius) Extract Syrup Formula as a Nutritive Antioxidant Drink
( 61 ) Productivity Analysis of Labor for Use on Potatoes
( 62 ) The Value of Selected Ecosystem Services: A Case Study of East Mau Forest Ecosystem, Kenya
( 63 ) Effects of Different Storage Conditions on Rooting and Shooting Performance of Grapevine (Vitis Vinifera L.) Cuttings in Hydroponic Culture System
( 64 ) Roles of Extension Services in Adoption of Agroforestry Practices among Farmers in South West Nigeria
( 65 ) Influense of Indole Butyric Acid (IBA) for Stenting Propagation of Cut Rose
( 66 ) Tabu-Genetic Algorithm-Based Model for Poultry Feed Formulation
( 67 ) Patterns of Plant Community Formation and Vegetation Structure in the Afro- Alpine Vegetation of Simien Mountains National Park, Ethiopia
( 68 ) Optimal Rate of Nitrogen and Intra-Row Spacing for Economical Production of Onion under Irrigated Farming System in Eastern Amhara Region, Ethiopia
( 69 ) Risk Factors for the Contamination of Wild Stomoxys niger niger Macquart 1851 (Diptera: Muscidae) with the Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus
( 70 ) Effect of Planting Date on Growth and Yield of Bambara Groundnut (Vigna subtermnea (L) Verdc.) Varieties in Rainforest Zone of Delta State
( 71 ) Dynamic Shift-Share Analysis of Forestry Industry Structure and Competitiveness in Heilongjiang Province
( 72 ) Socioeconomic Impact of Bagging Technology for Value Addition in Mango in the Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh
( 73 ) Short-Term Benefits of Grain Legume Fallow Systems on Soil Fertility and Farmers Livelihood in the Humid Forest Zone of Cameroon
( 74 ) Evaluation of Leaf-Water Relation Traits, as Selection Criterion for Developing Drought Resistant Potato (Solanum Tuberosum L.) Genotypes
( 75 ) Comparative Evaluation of Six Different Storage Materials for Long-Term Preservation of Huckleberry (Solanum scabrum) Seeds
( 76 ) Impact of Subclinical Mastitis on Reproductive Performance of Dairy Animals
( 77 ) Evaluation of Bambara Groundnut (Vigna Subterranea (L) Verdc.) Varieties for Adaptation to Rainforest Agroecological Zone of Delta State, Nigeria
( 78 ) Modelling and Optimization of Rice (Oryza sativa L.) Paddy Pre-Treatments for Optimum Chemical Property using Response Surface Methodology
( 79 ) Phenotypic Performance Evaluation of Improved Tef (Eragrostis tef L) Genotypes in North Gondar
( 80 ) Principal Component Analysis for the Quantification of Soil Horizon Carbon Stocks in Relation to Soil Bulk Density
( 81 ) Penman and Thornwait Equations for Estimating Reference Evapotranspiration Under Semi-Arid Environment
( 83 ) Color-Based Forest Cover Type Image Segmentation using K-Means Clustering Approach
( 84 ) Comparing the Molluscicidal Action of Metaldehyde, Oxamyl, Potassium Nitrate and a Botanical Insecticide for Managing Limacolaria Spp Infesting Banana Plantations in Cameroon
( 85 ) Market Participation and Food Security Status of Bio-Fortified Cassava Processors in South Western Nigeria
( 86 ) Growth Performance of Kit Rabbits Fed Concentrate Diet Supplemented with Varying Foliage Leaf Meals
( 87 ) Evaluation of Bread Making Performance of Some Wheat Flour Brands Available in Nigerian Markets as Affected by Cassava or Sweet Potato Flour Inclusion
( 89 ) Seedlings Performance of Triplochiton scleroxylon (K. Schum.) under Different Light Intensities and Soil Textural Classes
( 90 ) The Role of Drones as an Enabler for the 4th Agricultural Revolution
( 91 ) Breeding for Weevil (Sitophilus Zeamais Motschulsky) Resistance in Maize (Zea mays L)
( 92 ) Estimation of Ground Water Recharge for Irrigation Water Budget Planning in Kanzenze Swamp
( 93 ) Plant Diversity and Regeneration Potentials in Protected Area Forests of Sierra Leone
( 94 ) Relationship between Human Activities and Deforestation in Karongi District of Rwanda
( 95 ) Temporal Rhythms of Dry Tropical Forest Regeneration under Exploration of Granite-Gnaisse Mining in a Semi-Arid Area
( 96 ) Evaluation of Socio-Economic Impacts of Deforestation in Edo State, Nigeria
( 97 ) Impacts of Rural Community on the Forest Estate in Ugbolu, Oshimili North Local Government Area, Delta State, Nigeria
( 98 ) Construction of Sustainable Frugal Innovations Index for the Agriculture Sector
( 99 ) Bacteriological Quality and Cyanide Contents of Different Cassava Products Processed in Benue State for Use as Food for Man or Feedstock for Animals
( 100 ) Prevalence of Subclinical Mastitis and its Effects on Reproductive Performance in Dairy Cows during the Postpartum Period in Gasabo District, Rwanda
( 101 ) Ecosystem Services Assessment of Mangrove Forest in a Coastal Island of Bangladesh
( 102 ) Constructed Wetland Effluent Irrigation as a Potential Water and Nutrient Source for Vegetables
( 103 ) Households Demand for Branded Tea in Southwest, Nigeria
( 104 ) Floristic Composition and Woody Species Diversity in National Park of Madhupur Tract Under Tangail North Forest Division, Bangladesh
( 105 ) Wood Density of Lower Stratum Trees in a Semi-Deciduous Tropical Forest of Cameroon
( 106 ) Analysis of Arable Farmers Agroforestry Practices in Bokkos Local Government Area, Plateau State, Nigeria
( 110 ) Biochemical Composition and Consumption Risk of Leafy Vegetables Puts and Babenda Cereals Produced in Five Cities in Burkina Faso
( 112 ) Impact of Laser Land Leveling On Water Productivity of Wheat under Deficit Irrigation Condations
( 113 ) Association between Yield Components of Sorghum (Sorghum Bicolor L. (Moench) Under Different Watering Intervals
( 114 ) Hot Water Enhanced Germination of Leucaena Leucocephala Seeds in Light and Dark Conditions
( 115 ) Rural Farmers’ Coping Strategies to Effects of Climate Change on Watermelon Production in Igboora, Oyo State, Nigeria
( 116 ) Estimation of Suspended Sediment Load in the Ressoul Watershed, Algeria
( 117 ) Changes in Certain Agronomic Characteristics of Table Grape Cultivar Alphonse Lavallee’ in Response to Water Deficit under the Different Rootstock Effect
( 119 ) Estimation of Water Stress in Guinea and Sudano-Sahelian Ecological Zones of Nigeria Under Climate Change and Population Growth
( 121 ) A Survey of Farmers Knowledge and Practice on the Management of Watermelon Diseases in Horticultural Belt of Mt. Kenya Slopes