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U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2010-3071

Prepared in cooperation with the Millennium Challenge Corporation

Groundwater Resources of Ribeira Fajã Basin, Island of São Nicolau, Cape Verde, West Africa

By Victor M. Heilweil, Stephen B. Gingerich, L. Niel Plummer, and Ingrid M. Verstraeten

Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (1.1 MB)Overview

Groundwater resources in Cape Verde provide water for agriculture, industry, and human consumption. These resources are limited and susceptible to contamination. Additional groundwater resources are needed for continued agricultural development, particularly during times of drought, but increased use and (or) climatic change may have adverse effects on the quantity and quality of freshwater available. In volcanic island aquifers such as those of Cape Verde, a lens of fresh groundwater typically “floats” upon a layer of brackish water at the freshwater/saltwater boundary, and increased pumping may cause salt water intrusion or other contamination. A recent U.S. Geological Survey study assessed baseline groundwater conditions in watersheds on three islands of Cape Verde to provide the scientific basis for sustainably developing water resources and minimizing future groundwater depletion and contamination.

For additional information contact:
Director, International Water Resources Branch
U.S. Geological Survey
12201 Sunrise Valley Drive
Reston, Virginia 20192

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Suggested citation:

Heilweil, V.M., Gingerich, S.B., Plummer, L.N., Verstraeten, I.M., 2010, Groundwater Resources of Ribeira Fajã Basin, Island of São Nicolau, Cape Verde, West Africa: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2010-3071, 3 p.


Overview of Cape Verde baseline groundwater study

Ribeira Fajã Basin, São Nicolau

Challenges for future water-resources development and management in Ribeira Fajã Basin

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