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Scientists to discuss initial results of Madera-Chowchilla groundwater study

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

December 9, 2009

Pdf versions of news release and State Board announcement.

Public invited to informational meeting Dec. 16 in Madera

Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) next week will present their initial results of a study of untreated well water from groundwater basins in the areas of Madera and Chowchilla, in California’s San Joaquin Valley.

The meeting, conducted by the State Water Resources Control Board and the USGS, is set for Wednesday, Dec. 16th, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Madera City Council Chambers, 205 West Fourth St., Madera, CA.

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 Project, which monitors and assesses water quality in groundwater basins in 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 lead for the GAMA Priority Basin 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.

In April and May, the USGS sampled well water from the Madera and Chowchilla groundwater basins in Madera County and a small portion of Merced and Fresno counties. The Madera/Chowchilla study unit is one of 35 GAMA study units in California.

While scientists have not completed their full report, they will discuss some of their initial findings at the meeting. Their completed report is expected to be available next year.

The GAMA Priority Basin Project is designed to characterize raw water quality in groundwater basins. GAMA does not evaluate the quality of water delivered to consumers since public water systems typically treat (or mix) it to meet drinking water standards.
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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