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Artificial Recharge Affects Groundwater Levels and Water Quality in San Bernardino County, California –USGS, in cooperation with the Hi-Desert Water District, reported that the artificial replenishment of the groundwater aquifer system in the west hydrogeologic unit of the Warren groundwater basin in San Bernardino County’s Yucca Valley resulted in a decrease of nitrate concentrations in groundwater samples and a rise in water levels. The nitrate concentrations of the replenishment water were lower than the native groundwater. (Press Release; Report)
Groundwater Storage in the Black Hills of western South Dakota –USGS, in cooperation with the West Dakota Water Development District, South Dakota Department of Environment and Natural Resources, and Lawrence County, assessed groundwater storage in the Madison aquifer in the Black Hills of western South Dakota using microgravity methods. Microgravity measurements from 2009 to 2012 were used to investigate groundwater-storage changes and effective porosity in unconfined areas of the Madison aquifer. (Full report)
A switch to river water allows aquifer to recharge in Albuquerque, New Mexico –USGS monitoring in New Mexico, in concert with the Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority, shows that river water use is allowing the aquifer underlying Albuquerque to recharge. A total of 15 of 18 USGS groundwater monitoring wells show rising water levels after years of decline. The aquifer recovery is consistent with a USGS study done before the switch to river water began, about 3 years ago, which concluded the water table would rise 25 feet or more across Albuquerque's Northeast Heights as holes left by past pumping fill in. The drinking water project by the Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority uses water imported into the Rio Grande Basin via dams and a pipeline from the headwaters of the San Juan River in the mountains of southern Colorado.
Groundwater Storage and Recharge Ponds Successful in Stockton, California –USGS, in cooperation with the City of Stockton, assessed the feasibility of recharging underlying aquifers by infiltrating water through recharge ponds into the aquifer system. Stockton relies on groundwater for about 20 percent of its public supply, but water withdrawals have exceeded the amount of water naturally entering the aquifer system, resulting in declining groundwater levels. Using surface water and stormflow to recharge groundwater by infiltration through ponds can have beneficial effects on water quality. These benefits, including the removal of organic carbon and the decrease of microbiological contamination, allow for the recharge of aquifers using water with potentially impaired water quality, enabling groundwater managers to consider previously unusable sources for water supply. (Complete article)
Managing aquifer recharge from a Utah reservoir –USGS, in cooperation with Utah's Washington County Water Conservancy District, assessed the quantity and quality of groundwater recharge from the Sand Hollow Reservoir, which was completed in 2002 and operated primarily for managed aquifer recharge. Impacts of surface-water diversions, groundwater pumping, and French drains on the timing, quality, and location of recharge to the underlying Navajo Sandstone aquifer were evaluated from 2002 through 2009. From 2002 through 2009, about 86,000 acre-feet of water seeped beneath the reservoir to recharge the underlying Navajo Sandstone aquifer. Findings showed that by 2010, this recharge arrived at monitoring wells within about 1,000 feet of the reservoir. (USGS report)
Groundwater recharge to aquifers in northern Arizona –A USGS report, done in cooperation with the Arizona Department of Water Resources and >Yavapai County, simulated how recharge from rainfall and snowmelt moves through the region's aquifers and eventually provides water to rivers, streams, and springs, and wells. The model (referred to as the "Northern Arizona Regional Groundwater-Flow Model”) was developed as a tool for communities and water managers to better understand the possible long-term effects of future groundwater use on aquifers and connected watercourses.