Open-File Report 98-172
Ground-water conditions in Georgia during 1997 and for the period of record were evaluated using data from ground-water-level and ground-water-quality monitoring networks. Data for 1997 included in this report are from continuous water-level records from 71 wells and chloride analyses from 14 wells.
In 1997, annual mean ground-water levels in Georgia ranged from 6.2 feet (ft) lower to 5.6 ft higher than in 1996. Of the 71 wells summarized in this report, 23 wells had annual mean water levels that were higher, 35 wells had annual mean water levels that were lower, and 11 wells had annual mean water levels that were about the same in 1997 as during 1996. Data for two wells are incomplete because data collection was discontinued at one well, and the equipment was vandalized at one well.
Record-low daily mean water levels were recorded in six wells tapping the Upper Floridan aquifer, one well tapping the Caliborne aquifer, two wells tapping the Clayton aquifer, and three wells tapping Cretaceous aquifers. These record lows were from 0.2 to 5.6 ft lower than previous record lows.
Chloride concentration in water from the Upper Floridan aquifer in most of coastal Georgia was within drinking-water standards established by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. In the Savannah area, chloride concentration has not changed appreciably with time. However, chloride concentration in water from some wells that tap the Floridan aquifer system in the Brunswick area exceeds the drinking-water standard.
Ground-water-level and ground-water-quality data are essential for water assessment and management. Ground-water-level fluctuations and trends can be used to estimate changes in aquifer storage resulting from the effects of ground-water withdrawal and recharge from precipitation. These data can be used to address water-management needs and to evaluate the effects of management and conservation programs.
As part of the ground-water investigations conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with the State of Georgia and city and county governments, a Statewide water-level- measurement program was started in 1938. Initially, this program consisted of an observation-well network in the coastal area of Georgia to monitor variations in ground- water storage and quality. Additional wells were later included in areas where data could be used to predict potential water-resource problems.
During 1997, periodic water-level measurements were made in 67 wells, and continuous water-level measurements were obtained from 151 wells. Continuous water-level records were obtained using analog (pen and chart) recorders, digital recorders that record the water level at 30-minute or 60-minute intervals, and electronic data recorders that record the water level at 60-minute intervals. For wells having incomplete water-level record, water levels during periods of missing record may have been higher or lower than recorded water levels. Water samples collected from 23 wells during April and November 1997 were analyzed to determine chloride concentration in the Savannah and Brunswick areas.
First posted February 5, 2010
This publication is in PDF format.