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DGS issues report on the surficial geology of southern Delaware

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Report of Investigation 76
May 20, 2010

The Delaware Geological Survey (DGS) has released a new technical report entitled Stratigraphy, Correlation, and Depositional Environments of the Middle to Late Pleistocene Interglacial Deposits of Southern Delaware.

The report was prepared by Kelvin W. Ramsey of the DGS.

DGS Report of Investigations No. 76 contains an update of the stratigraphic framework and correlation of deposits associated with middle to late Pleistocene interglacial highstands of sea level in Southern Delaware.

Two new lithostratigraphic groups (Delaware Bay and Assawoman Bay) and one new formation (Turtle Branch) are defined.

Detailed descriptions of nine different formations along with the spatial distribution of sand and clayey deposits related to coastal environments associated with the rise and fall of sea level and highstands of sea level during the past 500,000 years are also provided.

Understanding the geologic history, distribution, and descriptions of the sediments is important because they are the conduit for groundwater recharge and comprise the pathway for the distribution, transmission, quantity, and quality of unconfined groundwater that is used for public, domestic, agricultural, and industrial water supplies throughout Sussex County.

The sediments are also used to support land-based wastewater disposal systems. The report contains detailed descriptions of geologic units shown on recently completed DGS Geologic Map No. 15, Geology of the Georgetown Quadrangle, Delaware.

The report is part of the Delaware Geological Survey's ongoing mission to understand geologic systems and to advise, inform, and educate Delawareans about the results of such investigations for use in such topics as water resources, agriculture, public health, economic development, land-use planning, geologic hazards, environmental protection, energy and mineral resources, emergency management, and recreation.

Report of Investigations 76 is available in PDF format to view online or as a downloadable product from the DGS website.

Printed copies may be requested by contacting the Survey at (302) 831-2833, via email at [delgeosurvey@udel.edu], or by visiting the DGS office off Academy Street on the University of Delaware's Newark campus.

For questions and information, contact DGS at
delgeosurvey@udel.edu, 302-831-2833