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Groundwater Allocation

Managing Growing Pressures on Quantity and Quality

image of Groundwater Allocation

Groundwater allocation determines who is able to use groundwater resources, how, when and where. It directly affects the value (economic, ecological, socio-cultural) that individuals and society obtain from groundwater, today and in the future. Building on the 2015 OECD publication Water Resources Allocation: Sharing Risks and Opportunities, this report focuses on groundwater and how its allocation can be improved in terms of economic efficiency, environmental effectiveness and social equity. Drawing on an analysis of groundwater’s distinctive features and nine case studies of groundwater allocation in a range of countries, the report provides practical policy guidance for groundwater allocation in the form of a "health check". This health check can be used to assess the performance of current arrangements and manage the transition towards improved allocation.

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The OECD health check for water resources allocation: Groundwater guidance

This chapter sets out policy guidance for groundwater allocation. The guidance in this chapter should be used as a supplement to the OECD Health Check for Water Resources when assessing allocation arrangements of groundwater systems and in cases where surface and groundwater systems are managed conjunctively. The guidance in this chapter first reiterates some of the general principles that apply broadly to all allocation regimes, then describes how the specific features of groundwater can be considered.

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