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QUESTA BASELINE AND PRE-MINING GROUND-WATER QUALITY INVESTIGATION. 3. HISTORICAL GROUND-WATER QUALITY FOR THE RED RIVER VALLEY, NEW MEXICO

By  Sara H. LoVetere, D. Kirk Nordstrom, Ann S. Maest, and Cheryl A. Naus

Water-Resources Investigations Report 03-4186

This report is also available as a pdf.


ABSTRACT

    Historical ground-water quality data for 100 wells in the Red River Valley between the U.S. Geological Survey streamflow-gaging station (08265000), near Questa, and Placer Creek east of the town of Red River, New Mexico, were compiled and reviewed.  The tabulation included 608 water-quality records from 23 sources entered into an electronic database.  Ground-water quality data were first collected at the Red River wastewater-treatment facility in 1982.  Most analyses, however, were obtained between 1994 and 2002, even though the first wells were developed in 1962.

    The data were evaluated by considering (a) temporal consistency, (b) quality of sampling methods, (c) charge imbalance, and (d) replicate analyses.  Analyses that qualified on the basis of these criteria were modeled to obtain saturation indices for gypsum, calcite, fluorite, gibbsite, manganite, and rhodocrosite.  Plots created from the data illustrate that water chemistry in the Red River Valley is predominantly controlled by calcite dissolution, congruent gypsum dissolution, and pyrite oxidation.

CONTENTS

Abstract 

Introduction 

    Physical setting 

    Climate and vegetation

    Geology

    Surface water

    Ground water

    Mine history and ground-water development

    Acknowledgments

Ground-water quality database

    Well information 

    Compilation of complete database

    Accuracy of data

    Quality control on database entries

    Compilation of database for selected analyses

Historical ground-water quality

    Concentrations and time-series relations

    Saturation indices

    Problems and assumptions

Summary and conclusions

References 

Appendix 1. Complete historical ground-water quality database, Red River Valley, New Mexico, 1982-2002 


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For more information on the investigation of baseline and pre-mining ground water quality, Red River Valley Basin, New Mexico, visit our website at:

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