[PASSED] Preventing Groundwater Contamination

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Midnight Sparkle
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[PASSED] Preventing Groundwater Contamination

Post by Midnight Sparkle » Tue Jan 15, 2019 5:50 pm

Category: Environmental

Industry Affected: All Businesses - Mild

Proposed by: Wallenburg

Celebrating past efforts to raise awareness of the importance of water resource conservation and protection, and to implement policies to reduce overuse and contamination of naturally occurring water resources,

Concerned that few of these efforts have addressed groundwater sources in any manner, even though underground aquifers provide the majority of water used and consumed in member states,

Noting that transboundary aquifers are very common, and the management and protection of their resources inherently represents an international issue,

Recognizing that nearly all member nations depend on aquifers for the purposes of agriculture, industry, and domestic consumption, and that a risk to the potability or usability of these essential water resources presents a risk to the prosperity and survival of countless inhabitants of member states,

Understanding that while many aquifers may be less prone to contamination than surface water sources, few technologies exist to resolve groundwater contamination after its effects become deleterious, and many shallow, consolidated, unconfined, or overexerted aquifers do not sufficiently benefit from the filtration effects of surrounding soils to prevent contamination,

Resolving to reduce contamination of vulnerable aquifers by saltwater and artificial pollutants, including pathogens, nitrates, phosphates, toxic and nuclear wastes, and artificial herbicides and pesticides,

The World Assembly hereby:

Tasks the International Bureau of Water Safety with researching and consolidating information on the size, distribution, and characteristics of groundwater resources, and issuing recommendations for the protection and conservation of these resources for reliable, long-term use,

Requires member states to plan future land use so that agricultural, industrial, and transportation pollutants will not present any measurable threat to the utility and potability of aquifers,

Mandates the implementation of regulations to protect groundwater resources near or interacting with sinkholes and cenotes on agricultural developments, including but not limited to:

The growth or construction of a physical barrier around the mouth of the sinkhole or cenote, at a distance from the edge appropriate for the conditions of the sinkhole site, in order to minimize the accumulation of pollutants within the sinkhole or cenote,

Diversion of all surface runoff around or away from the sinkhole or cenote,

Cessation of application of fertilizers, herbicides, or pesticides in the vicinity of the sinkhole or cenote,

Restriction of all activity within the enclosed area of the sinkhole or cenote to scientific and recreational activities individually reviewed by a jurisdictional authority, determined to present no measurable threat to any groundwater system, and carried out by individuals possessing permits to perform those activities,

Mandates protection of wildlife within all naturally occurring underground drainage systems, and recommends communication with the WA Endangered Species Committee for specific means by which to preserve the ecosystems contained within,

Recommends that development of urban or industrial infrastructure upon evaporite formations, especially carbonates, in cases where acidic dissolution has resulted in extensive underground drainage systems, be limited as much as possible, and requires member states to institute additional limitations on industrial and agricultural activity to further prevent contamination of these particularly vulnerable aquifers,

Requires all wells constructed over unconfined aquifers to undergo regular inspections for contamination of the groundwater below, and prohibits the use or disposal of potential contaminants in or nearby the opening of any such well,

Requires member states to limit extraction from each aquifer to a maximum of the rate at which each aquifer is projected to saturate, and urges member states to further limit extraction from aquifers bordering saltwater fronts, so that the pressure of the fresh
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