History of Hydrogeology in Fiji
Groundwater had been recognised as an essential source of water supply for many areas of Fiji and hydrogeology and drilling have been important areas of activity for the department.
With limited resources in terms of manpower and funds, several attempts have been made in the past to carry out systematic assessment of the groundwater resources of the country through cooperative projects often with Aid Donors.
The present Hydrogeology Unit was firmly established at the end of a major British Aid Project implemented over 1986-1990, which carried out groundwater investigations in selected areas over the entire country.
Several production and test boreholes were completed during the period on the main islands as well as small islands. The project produced hydrogeological maps of the two major islands, provided training for local geoscientists and donated suitable equipment for conducting research and drilling of boreholes. Our main portable rig, which is extensively used on the small island, was part of the British Aid
A major Groundwater Investigation Project funded entirely by the Government of Japan was carried out between 1993 and 1995 in the West covering an area from Ba to Rakiraki.
The main proportion of the work involved carrying out an extensive assessment program and drilling of some 12 test boreholes. Apart from this, the project provided several million dollars of groundwater drilling equipment for drilling on the major islands. The new rig is particularly suitable for work in the type of environment where drilling is commonly carried out on the major islands.
Japan had also provided a similar equipment grant package in 1982 which included a complete drilling outfit. This was part of a groundwater project carried out for the greater Labasa area. The equipment serviced us over the years untill 1994 when the new set was received.
In August 1996, a French Aid Project valued at FF2.31 million was started to study areas in Vanua Levu and fund the drilling of several boreholes for groundwater. A total of 24 boreholes were drilled.