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Groundwater Recharge in a Desert Environment: The Southwestern United States

Groundwater Recharge in a Desert Environment: The Southwestern United States

James F. Hogan (Editor), Fred M. Phillips (Editor), Bridget R. Scanlon (Editor)

ISBN: 978-1-118-66566-4

Mar 2013, American Geophysical Union

294 pages


Published by the American Geophysical Union as part of the Water Science and Application Series, Volume 9.

Groundwater recharge, the flux of water across the water table, is arguably the most difficult component of the hydrologic cycle to measure. In arid and semiarid regions the problem is exacerbated by extremely small recharge fluxes that are highly variable in space and time.
--from the Preface

Groundwater Recharge in a Desert Environment: The Southwestern United States speaks to these issues by presenting new interpretations and research after more than two decades of discipline-wide study. Discussions ondeveloping environmental tracers to fingerprint sources and amounts of groundwater at the basin scalethe critical role of vegetation in hydroecological processesnew geophysical methods in quantifying channel rechargeapplying Geographical Information System (GIS) models to land surface processescoupling process-based vadose zone to groundwater modeling, and more make this book a significant resource for hydmlogists, biogeoscientists, and geochemists concerned with water and water-related issues in arid and semiarid regions.

James F. Hogan, Fred M. Phillips, and Bridget R. Scanlon  vii

Section I: Introduction and Overview

Introduction and Overview
Fred M. Phillips, James E Hogan, and Bridget R. Scanlon  1

Section II: Recharge Mechanisms and Processes

Hydrologic Processesin Deep Vadose Zones in Interdrainage Arid Environments
Michelle A. Walvoord and Bridget R. Scanlon  15

Tectonic, Climatic, and Land-Use Controls on Groundwater Recharge in an Arid Alluvial Basin:
Amargosa Desert, U.S.A.
David A. Stonestrom, David E. Prudic, Randell J. Laczniak, and Katherine C. Akstin  29

Millimeter- to Kilometer-ScaleV ariationsi n Vadose-ZoneB edrockS olutes: Implicationsf or Estimating
Recharge in Arid Settings
Victor M. Hellwell and D. Kip Solomon  49

ProcessesC ontrolling Recharge Beneath Ephemeral Streamsi n Southern Arizona
Kyle Blasch, Ty P. A. Ferre, John Hoffman, Donald Pool, Matthew Bailey, and Jeffrey Cordova  69

Comparison of Methods to Estimate Ephemeral Channel Recharge, Walnut Gulch, San Pedro River
Basin, Arizona
David C. Goodrich, David G Williams, Carl L. Unkrich, James E. Hogan, Russell L. Scott, Kevin R. Hultine, Don Pool, Alissa L. Coes, and Scott Miller  77

Modeling Variably Saturated Flow Using Kinematic Waves in MODFLOW
Richard G. Niswonger and David E. Prudic  101

Mountain-Block Hydrology and Mountain Front Recharge
John L. Wilson and Huade Guan  113

Constraining Mountain-Block Recharge to the Eastern Salt Lake Valley, Utah With Dissolved Noble Gas
and Tritium Data
Andrew H. Manning and D. Kip Solomon  139

Section III: Case-Studies at the Basin Scale

Fundamental Concepts of Recharge in the Desert Southwest: A Regional Modeling Perspective
Alan L. Flint, Lorraine E. Flint, Joseph A. Hevesi, and Joan B . Blainey 159

Using Geochemical Data and Aquifer Simulation to Characterize Recharge and Groundwater Flow in
the Middle Rio Grande Basin, New Mexico
L. Neil Plummer, Ward E. Sanford, Laura Bexfield, Scot K. Anderholm, and Eurybiades Busenberg 185

The Origins, Ages and Flow Paths of Groundwater in Tuscon Basin: Results of a Study of Multiple
Isotope Systems
Christophe J. Eastoe, Ailiang Gu, and Austin Long  217

Section IV: Synthesis

Evaluation of Methods of Estimating Recharge in Semiarid and Arid Regions in the Southwestern U.S.
Bridget R. Scanlon  235

Semi-Discrete Dynamical Model for Mountain-Front Recharge and Water Balance Estimation,
Rio Grande of Southern Colorado and New Mexico
Christopher J. Duffy  255

Effects of Environmental Change on Groundwater Recharge in the Desert Southwest
Fred M. Phillips, Michele A. Walvoord, Eric E. Small  273