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Using deep drainage in the WA Wheatbelt to manage shallow saline groundwater in broad valley floors can lead to the discharge of acidic saline water that may require treatment of the acidity and removal of metals and minor elements before disposal or further use. The low pH and high concentrations of metals and other elements can pose environmental risks where water is discharged to creeks, floodways and lakes. The sustainable use of deep drains in managing dryland salinity will depend on meeting the pressing need to develop low-cost, practical, and effective options to treat acidity.

salinity; wetland; groundwater; flood