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Urban Hydrogeology and Thermal Groundwater Utilization

More and more people live in cities and megacities. Therefore, the relevance of urban hydrogeology is steadily increasing. Urban drinking water supply is a challenge, although drinking water is most often imported from remote sources, as urban groundwater is often seriously contaminated. Leaking sewage pipes are a major source of urban groundwater contamination.

However, urban groundwater does not only create problems, it also represents opportunities: As a result of the urban heat island effect, urban aquifers are often suitable for thermal groundwater utilization. Some of our research has also focused on an interesting special case of urban hydrogeology: thermal and mineral water resources in big cities, such as Stuttgart or Budapest.

Diagram thermal groundwater utilization

Hydrogeological map and profile of the thermal and mineral water system of Stuttgart. Owing to their location in the center of a big city, the state certified medicinal springs are exposed to many potential threats and hazards (Goldscheider et al. 2010).