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USGS to discuss initial results of Coachella Valley groundwater study

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

November 23, 2007

Public invited to meeting in Indio

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 Coachella Valley, Calif., at a public meeting next week in Indio.

The meeting, conducted by the State Water Resources Control Board and the USGS, will be from 1 to 3 p.m. Thursday, November 29, at the Workforce Development Center of Riverside County, 44-199 Monroe St., Suite B, Indio, Calif. Directions, an agenda and other information are available at the State Water Board’s Web site at http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/gama/.

The Water Board’s Groundwater Ambient Monitoring and Assessment (GAMA) Program is collaborating with the USGS and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories (LLNL) to conduct the Priority Basin Assessment Project.  The Priority Basin Assessment Project monitors and assesses. groundwater basins in California based on groundwater use. 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 and well owners, USGS is testing well water in California groundwater basins over a 10-year period.

USGS scientists sampled 35 public-supply, irrigation, industrial and domestic wells in the Coachella Valley, in portions of Riverside and Imperial counties (see map below). 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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