hydrogeology

Quantifying Geologic and Temporal Controls on Water and Chemical Exchange between Groundwater and Surface Water in Coastal Estuarine Systems

Project Contact(s)

Eutrophication is one of the most common and most severe problems facing coastal bays in
populated and agricultural areas. Unnaturally high quantities of nutrients enter fresh groundwater and surface water as a result of human activities. These nutrients contribute to the overpopulation of phytoplankton and macroalgae in coastal surface waters, which results in deterioration of water quality and animal habitat. This is a particular problem in the Delmarva region, where poultry farms, agricultural activity, and growing human populations have contributed to rapidly declining populations of blue crabs, striped bass, and many other species which live and breed in estuarine waters. The economic value of these species has, in part, prompted political action and efforts to manage nutrient inputs to groundwater and surface water, the primary pathways for nutrient loading to coastal waters. Despite significant reductions, coastal water quality has largely remained poor. A better understanding of the processes that moderate nutrient loading to coastal waters, particularly via groundwater, which is much more difficult to monitor than surface water inputs, is essential for improved management methods that will result in healthy coastal ecosystems. This project will improve understanding of where nutrients are coming from and how loading may be reduced, and may aid in identification of activities that exacerbate negative impacts.
The final DGS report on this project has been released and is available at:
http://www.dgs.udel.edu/publications/ri80-investigation-submarine-groun…

Presentation on groundwater availability

Date

John Talley, of the Delaware Geological Survey, made a presentation titled “Groundwater Availability, Trends in Water Use, and Potential Conflicts” at the Pickle Packers International spring meeting, Philadelphia, April 15.

Presentation on assessing suitability of land for rapid infiltration basin systems

Date

Scott Andres and Edward Walther, of the Delaware Geological Survey, presented "Development and Application of a GIS Screening Tool for Assessing Suitability of Land for Rapid Infiltration Basin Systems" at the National Ground Water Association Summit, Denver, April 12-15. Andres also participated in a panel discussion co-sponsored by the U.S. Subcommittee on Groundwater, "National Groundwater Monitoring Network: Listening Session."

DGS Cooperative and Joint-Funded Programs

The DGS is, by statute, the state agency responsible for entering into agreements with its counterpart federal agencies, including the U.S. Geological Survey, the USGS Office of Minerals Information (formerly the U.S. Bureau of Mines), and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (formerly the U. S. Minerals Management Service), and for administering all cooperative programs of the State with these agencies. The DGS also works with many in-state and out-of-state partner agencies and organizations.