I heard in tv show, there are water channels in underground like rivers or small channels! So I just wondered why don't we use such underground water channels to recharge the underground water of one area from another area, incase there are connections?

I'm sure if there are channels, scientists would have been done some research about it?

  • So, Do we have any underground water channels maps for world wide?
  • Do you think its possible to recharge lakes few miles away from river using this idea?

3 Answers 3


This is already used in some cases. The one I'm familiar with is California's Coachella Valley, best known as the home to Palm Springs.

Farms, golf courses, other businesses, and homes pump far more water out of the region's aquifer than is restored by normal rainfall, so the Coachella Valley Water District pipes in water from the Colorado River and, basically, pours it into the sand at the high end of the 15-mile-long valley.

This water then percolates through the sandy soil down the valley; it's retrieved through local wells. One advantage to delivering the water through the aquifer is that it avoids loss through evaporation.

The Coachella Valley’s groundwater basin can be imagined as a tilted bathtub filled with sand and gravel and topped with a layer of clay; water fills the spaces under the clay and in between the sand and gravel. --Coachella Valley Water District

This system works because:

  • There is a (relatively) plentiful external source of water.
  • The local geology allows water to flow.
  • The replenishment is largely powered and directed by gravity, which makes it cheap and avoids having to pump water into a system that already has liquid in it and having to worry about whether the water is going where you want.

This Stanford University project talks about the opportunities and challenges for aquifer recharge projects.

  • $\begingroup$ That's very useful information! What method normally they use to find the path of water flow underground? Is there a sate light to plot a channel map? $\endgroup$
    – Gowri
    Commented Aug 28, 2018 at 3:23
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ There are more elaborate electromagnetic and chemical methods, but drilling and measuring the depth of the water table is apparently the most straightforward method, since water will always seek to flow down: imnh.iri.isu.edu/digitalatlas/hydr/concepts/gwater/… At the $\endgroup$ Commented Aug 28, 2018 at 15:05

1) I don't believe there is a fully global map as some parts/countries of the world are inaccessible for varying reasons; however, there are a number of maps available for areas around the world.

2) Possibly, but it depends on a few factors. I think the cost would exceed the effort required to either reroute a subterranean river or produce enough pressure to keep the lake filled from below.

I might be wrong, but aside from a "spring fed" lake that can withstand a drought, most of the other lakes are either made from low basins along a river's path, as a result of tectonics, or created artificially by animals like a beaver and us.


Be aware that ducts lack the filtration process that bedrock often affords, and that you may introduce raw materials that are toxic to some of the ecosystem for the lake/etc.

As long as that's not an issue, then there's no implicit reason you could not. If you try to use geological formations for channeling the underground water, you suffer the risk of losing water to infiltration of the surrounding media.


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