Groundwater quality in the Lake Champlain and Susquehanna River basins, New York, 2014

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Organization: 

Publication Year: 

2016

Abstract: 

In a study conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey in cooperation with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, groundwater samples were collected from 6 production wells and 7 domestic wells in the Lake Champlain Basin and from 11 production wells and 9 domestic wells in the Susquehanna River Basin in New York. All samples were collected from June through December 2014 to characterize groundwater quality in these basins. The samples were collected and processed using standard procedures of the U.S. Geological Survey and were analyzed for 148 physiochemical properties and constituents, including dissolved gases, major ions, nutrients, trace elements, pesticides, volatile organic compounds, radionuclides, and indicator bacteria.

The Lake Champlain Basin study area covers the 3,050 square miles of the basin in northeastern New York; the remaining part of the basin is in Vermont and Canada. Of the 13 wells sampled in the Lake Champlain Basin, 6 are completed in sand and gravel, and 7 are completed in bedrock. Groundwater in the Lake Champlain Basin was generally of good quality, although properties and concentrations of some constituents— fluoride, iron, manganese, dissolved solids, sodium, radon-222, total coliform bacteria, fecal coliform bacteria, and Escherichia coli bacteria—sometimes equaled or exceeded primary, secondary, or proposed drinking-water standards. The constituent most frequently detected in concentrations exceeding drinking-water standards (5 of 13 samples) was radon-222.

The Susquehanna River Basin study area covers the entire 4,522 square miles of the basin in south-central New York; the remaining part of the basin is in Pennsylvania. Of the 20 wells sampled in the Susquehanna River Basin, 11 are completed in sand and gravel, and 9 are completed in bedrock. Groundwater in the Susquehanna River Basin was generally of good quality, although properties and concentrations of some constituents—pH, chloride, sodium, dissolved solids, iron, manganese, aluminum, arsenic, barium, gross-alpha radioactivity, radon-222, methane, total coliform bacteria, and fecal coliform bacteria—sometimes equaled or exceeded primary, secondary, or proposed drinking-water standards. As in the Lake Champlain Basin, the constituent most frequently detected in concentrations exceeding drinking-water standards (13 of 20 samples) was radon-222.

Document Type: 

  • Report

Tags: 

  • critical issues, database publication, water quality, new york