Early warning systems
process or tools aimed at alerting decision makers to pollution 
(exceeding of critical values) early enough to fend off
damage or failing that, to manage events in such a way that
the worst consequences are mitigated.
An early warning monitoring system for groundwater is a 
system for the reliable identification of low probability
/high impact contamination events (chemical, microbial,
radioactive, etc.).

The goal of early warning is to identify a contamination
event in time to allow effective local response that reduces
or entirely avoids adverse impacts.

Requirements for an ideal early warning system include:

• Affordable cost
• Low skill and training requirements
• Covers all potential threats
• Is able to identify the source
• Is sentitive to quality at regulatory level
• Gives minimal false positive or negative responses

• Is robust, reproducible and verificable
• Functions year-round

Early warning systems may be designed using a network
of monitoring locations or strategically-situated measuring
points. Findings are evaluated in relation to relevant
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