Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2013DC148B

Monitoring Groundwater for Developing Alternative Source of Water Supply for Homeland Security in the District of Columbia

Institute: District of Columbia
Year Established: 2013 Start Date: 2013-03-01 End Date: 2014-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $15,000 Total Non-Federal Funds: $103,400

Principal Investigators: Kobina Atobrah, Tolessa Deksissa

Abstract: This research is the planning phase for monitoring of the Nations Capital groundwater resources, which is more critical than ever due to the potential contamination of current surface source water by natural or manmade disasters due to climate change. In the event of a catastrophic contamination of the current sources of surface water for potable supply to communities within the District of Columbia, it is imperative to have alternative source water until the contamination is mitigated. Groundwater is available to be an alternative resource. The District like most urban areas is on the fast track of industrial development with increased activities of construction, remodeling or tunneling that are likely to significantly impact the quality and quantity of its groundwater. The objective of this research is to establish the protocol and guidance for a continuing long term, consistent monitoring of chemicals, nutrients and other constituents in groundwater in the District of Columbia, as well as improve the tracking and modeling of chemical and physical changes that will be essential during the next decade to distinguish trends in groundwater quality and quantity. We will collaborate with USGS in sample collection. We will assess the effects of increased urbanization and impact on chemical changes on the Districts ground water quantity and quality. Furthermore, the research will understand the causes of trends, and accurately track the effectiveness of strategies to manage and protect this critical resource while accounting for contaminant sources and mitigation, and train students and professionals in wellhead protection and maintenance.