Summary: Guidelines on protecting groundwater from the landspreading of organic wastes. Many of these wastes are potentially beneficial to crops, but they are also potentially polluting and can present a risk to groundwater quality.
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The Geological Survey of Ireland in conjunction with the Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government and the Environmental Protection Agency, have developed a methodology for the preparation of groundwater protection schemes to assist the statutory authorities and others to meet their responsibility to protect groundwater (DoEHLG/EPA/GSI, 1999). This incorporates land surface zoning and groundwater protection responses.
These groundwater protection responses are concerned with the landspreading of organic fertilisers and wastes such as animal slurries from intensive farming enterprises, sewage sludges, poultry litter and industrial waste water treatment plant sludges. Most of these wastes are potentially beneficial to crops. However, they are also potentially polluting and if not correctly managed can present a risk to groundwater quality.