EGU21-15098, updated on 10 Jan 2024
EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2024. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Hydrogeochemical temporal variations related to changes of seismic activity at Tenerife, Canary Islands

Cecilia Amonte1,2, María Asensio-Ramos1, Gladys V. Melián1,2, Nemesio M. Pérez1,2, Eleazar Padrón1,2, Pedro A. Hernández1,2, Fátima Rodríguez1, Luca D'Auria1,2, and Dina López3
Cecilia Amonte et al.
  • 1Instituto Volcanológico de Canarias, Granadilla de Abona, Tenerife, Spain (
  • 2Instituto Tecnológico y de Energías Renovables, Granadilla de Abona, Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain
  • 3Departament of Geological Sciences, Ohio University, 316 Clippinger Laboratories Athens, Ohio, 45701, United States

The oceanic active volcanic island of Tenerife (2034 km2) is the largest of the Canarian archipelago. There are more than 1,000 galleries (horizontal drillings) in the island, which are used for groundwater exploitation and allow reaching the aquifer at different depths and elevations. During a two-year period (July 2016 to July 2018), a hydrogeochemical study was carried out in two galleries on Tenerife (Fuente del Valle and San Fernando) for volcanic monitoring purposes with weekly sampling. Physicochemical parameter of water, such us temperature (ºC), pH and electrical conductivity (E.C., µS·cm-1), were measured in-situ at each sampling point and chemical/isotopic composition of the water determined later in the laboratory.

Temperature values showed mean values of 28.1 ºC and 19.0 ºC for Fuente del Valle and San Fernando galleries, respectively. According to the average pH values, which were 6.30 for Fuente del Valle and 7.13 for San Fernando, and based on the chemical composition, both galleries are sodium-bicarbonate (Na-HCO3) type. E.C. values in both galleries presented high ranges, with mean values of 975 and 1648 µS·cm-1 for Fuente del Valle and San Fernando, respectively. The total alkalinity mean value of groundwater from Fuente del Valle gallery was 11.3 mEq·L-1 HCO3-, while that from San Fernando was 17.3 mEq·L-1 HCO3-. The SO42-/Cl molar ratio was 0.59 and 3.4 for the samples from Fuente del Valle and San Fernando galleries, respectively.

The δ18O and δD isotopic analyses showed a meteoric origin of groundwaters, with mean values of -6.2‰ and -26‰ vs. VSMOW for Fuente del Valle and -6.2‰ and -21 ‰ vs. VSMOW for San Fernando. The isotopic data showed a strong interaction with endogenous gases such as CO2, H2S, H2, etc. Regarding the isotopic composition of total dissolved carbon species, expressed as δ13CTDIC, average values of -0.17‰ and 0.26‰ were obtained for Fuente del Valle and San Fernando galleries, respectively. These results show an endogenous origin CO2 signature, heavier for Fuente del Valle gallery groundwater compared to that of San Fernando.

Groundwater physicochemical parameters exhibited stable values throughout the study period, while significant temporal variations were observed in the total alkalinity, SO42-/Cl- molar ratio, δ18O and δD. Changes in isotopic ratios coincided with variations observed in the alkalinity and the SO42-/Cl- molar ratio. On October 2, 2016, a seismic swarm of long-period events was recorded on Tenerife followed by a general increase of the seismic activity in and around the island. A correlation was observed between some hydrogeochemical parameters in the groundwaters of the galleries, related to observed changes of the seismic activity. This study demonstrates the suitability of monitoring the chemical and isotopic composition of groundwater from Fuente del Valle and San Fernando galleries, as they are sensitive to changes in volcanic activity on Tenerife island. The study of groundwaters associated to a volcanic system can provide information about the magmatic gas input in the aquifer, modelling how the groundwaters flow through the edifice, and offer important geochemical information that could herald a future eruption.

How to cite: Amonte, C., Asensio-Ramos, M., Melián, G. V., Pérez, N. M., Padrón, E., Hernández, P. A., Rodríguez, F., D'Auria, L., and López, D.: Hydrogeochemical temporal variations related to changes of seismic activity at Tenerife, Canary Islands, EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-15098,, 2021.


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