Hydrogeology of Guinea Bissau

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Africa Groundwater Atlas >> Hydrogeology by country >> Hydrogeology of Guinea Bissau


This page has limited information and needs to be updated. If you have more information on the hydrogeology of Guinea Bissau, please get in touch!

Present-day Guinea Bissau was once part of the Gabu kingdom and the ancient Mali empire. From the 15th century, the coast became a centre of slave trading by Portuguese merchants, which, as well as inland areas, became fully colonised by the Portuguese in the 19th century. An armed rebellion against colonial rule from the 1950s led to independence in 1974. The rebels were allied to an extent with independence fighters from another Portuguese colony, Cape Verde, although the two countries never unified. Since independence, Guinea Bissau has experienced constant political change, with a succession of coups.

Guinea Bissau adopted the CFA currency in 1997. There is some potential for mineral exploitation and possibly offshore hydrocarbon exploitation, but their development has been impeded by political instability and armed conflict. The economy remains dominated by agriculture and fishing, with cashew nuts and groundnuts the most important export crops. GDP and HDI remain some of the lowest world-wide. Illegal drug trafficking is significant, with the country used as a transit point for drugs between South America and Europe.

A tropical country with high but seasonal rainfall, Guinea Bissau has relatively abundant seasonal surface water resources, but dry season water supplies are largely sourced from groundwater.


Compilers

Dr Kirsty Upton and Brighid Ó Dochartaigh, British Geological Survey, UK

Dr Imogen Bellwood-Howard, Institute of Development Studies, UK

Please cite this page as: Upton, Ó Dochartaigh and Bellwood-Howard, 2018.

Bibliographic reference: Upton, K, Ó Dochartaigh, B É and Bellwood-Howard, I. 2018. Africa Groundwater Atlas: Hydrogeology of Guinea Bissau. British Geological Survey. Accessed [date you accessed the information]. http://earthwise.bgs.ac.uk/index.php/Hydrogeology_of_Guinea_Bissau

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The Africa Groundwater Atlas is hosted by the British Geological Survey (BGS) and includes information from third party sources. Your use of information provided by this website is at your own risk. If reproducing diagrams that include third party information, please cite both the Africa Groundwater Atlas and the third party sources. Please see the Terms of use for more information.

Geographical Setting

Guinea Bissau.Map developed from USGS GTOPOPO30; GADM global administrative areas; and UN Revision of World Urbanization Prospects. For more information on the map development and datasets see the geography resource page

General

Estimated Population in 2013* 1,704,255
Rural Population (% of total) (2013)* 52.3%
Total Surface Area* 28,120 sq km
Agricultural Land (% of total area) (2012)* 58.0%
Capital City Bissau
Region Western Africa
Border Countries Senegal, Guinea
Annual Freshwater Withdrawal (2013)* 175 Million cubic metres
Annual Freshwater Withdrawal for Agriculture (2013)* 82.3%
Annual Freshwater Withdrawal for Domestic Use (2013)* 13.1%
Annual Freshwater Withdrawal for Industry (2013)* 4.6%
Rural Population with Access to Improved Water Source (2012)* 55.5%
Urban Population with Access to Improved Water Source (2012)* 96.1%

* Source: World Bank


Climate

Koppen Geiger Climate ZonesAverage Annual PrecipitationAverage Temperature

Average monthly precipitation for Guinea Bissau showing minimum and maximum (light blue), 25th and 75th percentile (blue), and median (dark blue) rainfall Average monthly temperature for Guinea Bissau showing minimum and maximum (orange), 25th and 75th percentile (red), and median (black) temperature Quarterly precipitation over the period 1950-2012 Monthly precipitation (blue) over the period 2000-2012 compared with the long term monthly average (red)


More information on average rainfall and temperature for each of the climate zones in Guinea Bissau can be seen at the Guinea Bissau climate page.

These maps and graphs were developed from the CRU TS 3.21 dataset produced by the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia, UK. For more information see the climate resource page.

Surface water


Major surface water features of Guinea Bissau. Map developed from World Wildlife Fund HydroSHEDS; Digital Chart of the World drainage; and FAO Inland Water Bodies. For more information on the map development and datasets see the surface water resource page

Soil

Soil Map of Guinea Bissau, from the European Commission Joint Research Centre: European Soil Portal. For more information on the map see the soil resource page

Land cover

Land Cover Map of Guinea Bissau, from the European Space Agency GlobCover 2.3, 2009. For map key and more information on the datasets used to develop the map see the land cover resource page

Geology

The geology map shows a simplified version of the geology at a national scale (see the Geology resources section for more details).

More information is available in the report UN (1988) (see References section, below).



Geology of Guinea Bissau at 1:5 million scale. Developed from USGS map (Persits et al. 2002). For more information on the map development and datasets see the geology resource page

Hydrogeology

The hydrogeology map below shows a simplified version of the type and productivity of the main aquifers at a national scale (see the hydrogeology map resource page for more details).

More information on the hydrogeology of Guinea Bissau is available in the report United Nations (1988) (see References section, below).

Hydrogeology of Guinea Bissau at 1:5million scale. For more information on how the map was developed see the hydrogeology map resource page
Hydrogeology Key.png



Transboundary aquifers

For further information about transboundary aquifers, please see the Transboundary aquifers resources page.

References

References with more information on the geology and hydrogeology of Guinea Bissau can be accessed through the Africa Groundwater Literature Archive.


WES. Guinea Bissau: Country Profile. Water, Environment and Sanitation (WES), UNICEF.

United Nations. 1988. Groundwater in North and West Africa: Guinea-Bissau. United Nations Department of Technical Cooperation for Development and Economic Commission for Africa.

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Africa Groundwater Atlas >> Hydrogeology by country >> Hydrogeology of Guinea Bissau