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USGS to discuss initial results of Owens Valley-Indian Wells Valley groundwater study

Contact: Jim Nickles, 916/278-3016, cell 916/715-2253

November 9, 2007

Public invited to meetings in Bishop and Ridgecrest

Pdf version

Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) will discuss their initial findings from a comprehensive study of untreated well water in the Owens Valley and Indian Wells Valley, California, at two public meetings next week.

The meetings, conducted by the State Water Resources Control Board and the USGS, will be:

  • In Bishop on Thursday, November 15, at 2 p.m., at the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, 300 Mandich Lane.

  • In Ridgecrest on Friday, November 16, at 10 a.m., at the Indian Wells Valley Water District, 500 W. Ridgecrest Blvd.

Directions, an agenda and other information are available at the State Board’s Web site at http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/gama/.

The State Board’s Groundwater Ambient Monitoring and Assessment (GAMA) Program is partnering with the USGS and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories (LLNL) to sample drinking water wells in 35 groundwater basin “study units” throughout California. The main goals of GAMA are to improve comprehensive statewide groundwater monitoring and to increase the availability of groundwater quality information to the public.

The USGS California Water Science Center is the project lead for GAMA'S Priority Basin Assessment Project. With the voluntary cooperation of local water agencies, USGS is testing well water in California groundwater basins over a 10-year period.

USGS scientists sampled public-supply wells in the Owens and Indian Wells valleys, in portions of Inyo, Kern, Mono, and San Bernardino counties (Map). At the meeting, the USGS will give an overview of the preliminary results. A full report on the sampling data is expected to be published in about a year.

The GAMA Priority Basin Assessment Project is designed to characterize water quality in groundwater basins. GAMA does not evaluate the quality of water delivered to consumers. After withdrawal from the ground, water for public systems is typically treated or mixed to maintain water quality before consumers receive it.

More information on the GAMA program is available at: http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/gama/ and http://ca.water.usgs.gov/gama/.

Links and contacts within this release are valid at the time of publication.


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