Groundwater is one of the limited natural resources of the world. Because of the lacking of accountability and awareness on the importance of groundwater, especially, in the late 20th century, groundwater has been significantly impaired by human activities, resulting in groundwater issues, such as land subsidence, seawater intrusion, groundwater pollution, and transboundary groundwater management. The East and Southeast Asia countries are also facing many groundwater issues which need international cooperation to be solved.
Since the establishment of CCOP in 1966, geological and geophysical surveys have been carried out in the East and Southeast Asia under the cooperative schemes for offshore natural resources. These data have been distributed to member countries as printed maps and publications. As for groundwater, the project “Groundwater database in East and Southeast Asia” was started under the DCGM Phase IV project of CCOP from 2001 to 2004. This was followed by the project “Groundwater Assessment and Control in the CCOP Region by CCOP-GSJ/AIST Groundwater project” from 2005 to 2008. It was initiated with the aim of finding a solution to issues of exploration and exploitation of groundwater resource. The final results of the project have been presented in the Special Session of the International Association of Hydrogeologists (IAH) meeting in Toyama, Japan in 2008.
The CCOP-GSJ/AIST Groundwater (GW) project Phase II, 2009-2014, kick-off meeting was held in Bangkok in October 2009. The agreement of the meeting was to release some kinds of hydro-geological map including the latest scientific information for the end-users at the completion of the Phase II project. The GW Phase II project had constructed database and its design, compiled data of Chao-Phraya Plain, Thailand and Red River Delta, Vietnam. We believe our final mission is to make an Asian Standard of hydrological map published from CCOP. A new sub-project “Development of Renewable Energy for Ground-Source Heat Pump System (GSHP System) in CCOP Regions”, under CCOP GW Project was started in April 2013. The project uses groundwater temperature data of the CCOP hydrological map. The sub-project had installed GSHP System at the premise of Chulalongkorn University (Thailand) under the cooperation program between Chulalongkorn University, Akita University (Japan) and GSJ. A publication was compiled from the country reports that were presented at the CCOP-GSJ/AIST-GA Groundwater Phase II Final Meeting, 18-20 March 2014, Bandung, Indonesia. The reports have made clear the target, framework and cooperation policy of Phase II project, and the agreement for the next Phase III GW Project.
The CCOP-GSJ/AIST-DGR Groundwater Phase III Project Kick-off Meeting was held on 10-12 February 2015, in Bangkok, Thailand. It was attended by forty-five participants from Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Vietnam and the CCOP Technical Secretariat. Dr. Youhei Uchida from the Geological Survey of Japan (GSJ/AIST) presented the outline of Groundwater Project Phase III with the main theme, “Renewal of database for the hydro-geological map in CCOP regions”. He then made an update on the status of the CCOP Groundwater Sub-Project “Development of Renewable Energy for Ground Source Heat Pump System in CCOP Regions”. He also introduced the new CCOP project funded by Japan, the Geoinformation Sharing Infrastructure (GSi) Project with the main aim of compiling various geoscientific information in CCOP countries and constructing a database on an open Web, using the world standard formats and GIS. Since the current status on the groundwater database management system varies from one CCOP member country to another, three (3) groups have been accordingly formed and Group Leader identified:
The CCOP-GSJ/AIST-NAWAPI Groundwater Project Phase III Meeting held on 16-18 March 2016, in Hanoi, Vietnam reported that since the current groundwater problem varies from one CCOP member country to another because of various hydrogeological and geographical settings, each Member Country is requested to share the information for efficient groundwater management in the CCOP regions. On the CCOP Groundwater Sub-Project: Development of Renewable Energy for Ground-Source Heat Pump System in CCOP Regions, two installations have been made during the period; (1) Installation of GSHP Horizontal Heat Exchanger at Chulalongkorn University, Saraburi campus, Thailand on June 2015 and (2) Installation of Ground Source Heat Pump System at Golden Jubilee National Geological Museum, Department of Mineral Resources, Thailand on March 2016. The presented project report and country papers on “Recent Groundwater Issues and Their Action Study” will be published in 2016. Group discussions on the 2015 Workplan and the plan for 2016 were also made. With regard to capacity building, the group plans to continue availing the relevant training courses and workshops offered by CCOP and its member countries, like the KIGAM’s ISGeo Regular Training Courses on Groundwater.
In 2017, the CCOP-GSJ/AIST Groundwater Project Phase III will have its annual meeting on 21-23 March 2017 in Bali, Indonesia. In cooperation with the Geological Agency (GA), Indonesia, this activity aims to update of the progress of the project, as well as share the current developments of groundwater activities in each country.