Programme OS6k Rural water conservation
Climate change and water availability in North-West Algeria: investigation
by dendrochronology and stable water isotopes
Author(s): Luc Lambs(1), Mohamed Labiod(2)
Luc Lambs 1 and Mohamed Labiod 1,2
1: Ecolab – CNRS, Toulouse
2: Université de
Keyword(s): water need,
dendrochronology, stable water isotope
Session: OS6k Rural water conservation
Since the seventies, the rainfalls incomest are getting lower along the North African
coast, while the demographic pressure increase, and such the water need increases. We present here the situation of
the Tafna river basin, centre around the city of Tlemcen, in the North-West of Algeria. Many poplar plantations in
the lower part of this basin present enhanced die-back and insects attacks, while many wells have no more water
during summer. The study reveals that the main cause of this die-back is the lack of water. Wood cores have been
extracted from these trees to quantified the change in growth. To complete the limited available rain data, the tree-
rings of the century old Alep pine forest over Tlemcen could be used to have a better knowledge of the local climate
change. Also isotopic samplings (18Oxygen and Deuterium) of the water in this basin were performed to better
understand the water circulation.
The objectives of this work is to compile all the data available on the climate
(rainfalls, river discharge, lake level), trying to make a dendrochronology reference curve, compare with the previous
data and to see how to extrapolate for longer time period. The first stable isotopes results have shown no seasonal
variation for the ground water, which confirm the wide karstic buffer. Also the isotopic signal is different between the
ground water of the higher and the lower Tafna basin, suggesting a bad connection between the two levels. Now a
more global surface water sampling is in progress to better understand the water fluxes in this area, and also the
impact of the dams, the other water puncture and used for domestic and industrial purposes.
In conclusion, this
local climate change is followed by many tools to better understand the impact of these lack of water, the
consequence on the underground water buffer and the influence on the local vegetation and the behaviour of the
human water uses.
-Devenir du peuplier blanc (Populus alba l.) dans le Nord-Ouest
Algérien. Diagnostic sanitaire de quelques peuplements sur la région de Tlemcen.
M. Labiod, A. Haddad, R.
Bouhraoua, A. Khelil Mohamed et Luc Lambs
Foret Méditerranéenne, soumis en Février 2007
hydrologique et dendrochronologique du haut bassin de la Tafna, NW Algérie
L. Lambs et M. Labiod
Journées de la société Francaise des Isotopes Stables, Nantes, 11-14 septembre 2006.