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Home > Current projects > San Diego Hydrogeology (APM00)

San Diego Hydrogeology (APM00)
Number: Location: Cooperating Agencies: Project Chief: Period of Project:
9677APM Earth,United States,Western US,California,San Diego Sweetwater Authority, City of San Diego Danskin


The primary objectives of this study are (1) to develop an integrated, comprehensive understanding of the geology and hydrology of the San Diego area, focusing on the San Diego Formation and the overlying alluvial deposits, and (2) to use this understanding to evaluate expanded use of the alluvial deposits and San Diego Formation for recharge and extraction. A secondary objective is to better understand the relation between urban hydrology, in particular groundwater extraction, and biologic resources along riparian corridors.

Relevance and Impact:

This study will benefit the cooperator by providing an improved understanding of the source of water to their production wells and the interaction of their production wells with near-surface ground water in the riparian, alluvial channel of the Sweetwater River. Benefits to others in the San Diego region will be from having a comprehensive investigation of the primary aquifer of the region. Benefits to the nation include quantifying the resources of an important coastal city, and developing the background information necessary to understand a complex coastal biologichydrologic environment.

Strategy and Approach:

To achieve the primary objectives requires (1) collection and analysis of new data, in particular new types of data such as naturally occuring stable and radioactive isotipes found in ground water; (2) exhaustive review of existing literature and interpretative work, and (3) development of comprehensive concepts that integrate geologic, hydrologic, and waterquality data. The study involves three phases. Phase I, which has been initiated, involves limited water-quality data collection mostly from existing production wells in Chula Vista. Phase II involves expanded water-quality sampling including from National City wells, development of a Geographical Information System, and presentation of data on a website. Phase III involves literature review, analysis of satellite InSAR data, aquifer tests, installation of a multiple-depth monitoring well, and preparation of a report.

Primary Products Planned:

Report, Planned: Danskin and Church, Hydrogeology of the San Diego Area, California.

USGS Website: http://ca.water.usgs.gov/program/coastal/sd/

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