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Abstract

Data obtained during an organic water quality survey of abstraction (pumping) wells in the Triassic Sandstone Aquifer of Birmingham (U.K.) indicate that there are important variations of chlorinated solvent concentrations with time. Short-term observation of solvent concentrations with elapsed pumping time indicates widely differing well responses; such observations are important in establishing good sampling protocols. Long-term monitoring indicates that solvent concentrations, particularly trichloroethene, are often stable with time. When large solvent variations do occur, these are shown to be due to the variation in the abstraction history of the well or significant migration of solvent plumes during the monitoring period. The latter effect is particularly exemplified by rising trends in 1,1,1-trichlroethane concentrations. The changes observed in solvent concentrations during long-term monitoring of the Birmingham Aquifer are slow to occur, but often large.