Groundwater Supplies ENB

Following a devastating volcanic eruption in 1994, Rabaul, the provincial township in East New Britain province, on the island of New Britain, required Douglas Partners’ hydrogeological expertise in the development of groundwater supplies for various resettlement areas, infrastructure and community facilities.

A World Bank sponsored project in Papua New Guinea is supplying potable fresh water to village communities in East New Britain Province, relocated after extensive damage to the township of Rabaul by volcanic eruptions in 1994.

Acting under the direction of the Gazelle Restoration Authority (GRA), the PNG Government agency responsible for restoration of the area, Douglas Partners (DP) was commissioned by New Britain Drillers Ltd to provide hydrogeological expertise for the development of groundwater supplies for various resettlement areas, villages, the new Tokua airport, community schools and hospitals in the Gazelle Peninsula of East New Britain.

Geologically, the region is underlain by pumiceous ash deposits with minor lava fl ows, with depths estimated from 1,000m to 5,000m. The relatively high permeability of these deposits allows rapid infi ltration of rainfall and substantial recharge of the underlying aquifers, which has resulted in the pumiceous ash containing signifi can’t fresh groundwater resources.

DP’s scope of work for the various water supply projects included drilling supervision, lithological and geophysical logging of bores up to 300 m deep, production bore design, field and laboratory analysis for potability, test pumping and analysis, and assessment of the bores’ long term sustainable yield.