Reading:

a) From the Catskills to Canal Street: New York City's Water Supply, by Schneiderman, in The Earth Around Us.

b) The Edwards Aquifer: water for thirsty Texans, by Sharp and Banner, in The Earth Around Us.

Journal Exercise: Report on irrigation canals in Nebraska and the role they play in water management and the environmental concerns associated with them. You should definitely do some research for this topic (unless you happen to have extensive personal experience with this topic). The web is one source of information. List your sources at the end.


The hydrologic cycle and sources of water in general.


Multiple uses of water and the debate on Missouri River management.

What are the myriad of uses water is put to?

Who are Missouri River management 'stockholders':

Missouri River management history:


Sources of water for Omaha.

Florence Plant, North Omaha, processing of Missouri River water.

Platte River well field, not to far from Offutt.

What does a water well typically consist of and why?

Pumping behavior of a well:

The source of water for the Platte River well field.

MUD document on third plant.

Dr. Schimmrich has collected links to hydrology and hydrogeology.


The High Plains Aquifer.

The extent of the aquifer is shown in this map from a USGS site. The following quote gives you some idea of its importance. "Approximately 20 percent of the irrigated land in the United States is in the High Plains and about 30 percent of the ground water used for irrigation in the U.S. is pumped from the High Plains aquifer. Irrigation withdrawals in 1990 were greater than 14 billion gallons per day. In 1990, 2.2 million people were supplied by ground water from the High Plains aquifer with total public-supply withdrawals of 332 million gallons per day. " http://webserver.cr.usgs.gov/nawqa/hpgw/HPGW_home.html

Geology of the aquifer:

In words - a large wedge of silts, sands and gravels that were shed off the Rocky Mountains to the West. Three major units are typically recognized. It is the youngest one, the Ogallala Group, that is a key geologic unit that often lends its name to the aquifer. USGS map below shows the distribution of some of the related units.

http://capp.water.usgs.gov/gwa/ch_d/gif/D049.GIF

View of water seeping out of the High Plains Aquifer on the south side of the Niobrara River valley just down stream from Valentine.

Sand Hills of Nebraska:

Changes in the aquifer water table with time. This is a USGS figure from the report cited below in the related links. It shows areas of intensive agricultural withdrawal. Why the increases in certain parts of Nebraska.

Water quality characteristics of the High Plains aquifer:

Interstate commerce in water?

Related links:

USGS photo of center pivot irrigation fed by the High Plains aquifer near Elkhart Kansas. So much that is important is hidden from view!

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