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4:34 AM Tue, Oct. 23rd

ADWR to begin water ‘sweeps’ to collect data on well levels

A hydrologist from Arizona Department of Water Resources measures the water level of an “index” well. ADWR is beginning its seasonal water “sweeps” on Oct. 22. (ADWR photo)

A hydrologist from Arizona Department of Water Resources measures the water level of an “index” well. ADWR is beginning its seasonal water “sweeps” on Oct. 22. (ADWR photo)

KINGMAN – The Arizona Department of Water Resources will begin its seasonal water “sweeps” Oct. 22, measuring water levels and pumping discharge of some 1,700 “index” wells throughout the state.

It’s one of the most important duties carried out by the department’s basic data unit, or BD unit, which has been the groundwater data collection arm of ADWR since it was formed.

Hydrologists and water resource specialists will continue collecting data through March.

Sweeps typically are conducted in areas where hydrologists determine a need to collect additional data. Generally, those are areas of the state subject to rapid change, such as developing areas or areas sensitive to environmental change.

The first sweep will include wells in the Pinal Active Management Area, continuing through January.

ADWR adopted its data collection protocols from the U.S. Geological Survey, including field inventories, water-level measurement, water-quality sampling and discharge measurement.

This enabled the data that ADWR collected to have instant compatibility with all of the USGS’s historical data.

USGS is assessing the impact of groundwater withdrawals and enhanced recharge of the Hualapai Valley basin through a groundwater monitoring and modeling study funded jointly by Mohave County and the City of Kingman.

ADWR has been conducting extensive measurements of water levels in wells in the Sacramento Valley, Detrital Valley, Hualapai Valley and Meadview groundwater basins since February.

ADWR uses the information gathered from well measurements to develop water level maps and to support scientific, planning, and management studies of each basin’s aquifer system.

The BD unit produces hydrologic maps and monitoring reports that show groundwater conditions within specific basins statewide.