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Highly Valuable Groundwater Supply Requires Management Strategy

Columbia River, Central Washington State


Client Chelan Public Utility District
Industries Water, Resources
Services Geophysics, Groundwater, Sustainability, & Hydrogeology

Assignment:

A productive aquifer in the US Pacific Northwest that supplies water for a salmon hatchery and drinking water for adjacent cities through high-capacity wellfields sought to achieve a sustainable water supply that meets specific water quality criteria.

For the local Chelan Public Utility District, an adequate amount of groundwater must be available with appropriately cool thermal conditions for rearing hatchery salmon.

Our Role:

To develop a long-term management plan, a data collection and modelling investigation was initiated to provide a technical foundation for sustainable wellfield management strategies.

The groundwater system is monitored using an automated network installed throughout the aquifer.

Golder assisted in developing quality assurance/quality control procedures for data collection and management, as well as evaluating high-resolution groundwater elevation and temperature data collected by the monitoring system.

We also incorporated seismic geophysical techniques to characterise the thickness of the aquifer.

The wellfield monitoring data, geologic and geophysical information, dam and associated cut-off wall construction documentation led to a conceptual hydrogeologic and thermal model of the aquifer. The conceptual model served as the basis for a numerical groundwater flow and heat transport model that is being used to test and develop strategies to improve resource availability.

The modelling approach is also allowing investigation of future scenarios to be fully evaluated to support improving efficiency; modifying pumping schedules to optimise seasonal temperatures; increasing demand by the drinking water supply wellfield; and installing new production wells to support community growth.

Associated Services

Environmental Management & Compliance Services
Developing sustainable solutions requires immense expertise in environmental science, human health, safety, public participation, and...

Geophysics
Golder’s geophysics team is a world leader in the use of applied geophysics methods to the study of the earth. These geophysics...

Groundwater Services
Over more than 40 years of delivering ground engineering and water management services, Golder has assembled one of the largest, and most...

Information Management & Graphics Services
Golder's Information Management & Graphics Consultants apply our expertise to transform the vast amounts of raw data underlying the...

Sustainability Services
Developing sustainable solutions—in everything from mining operations and energy production to master planning for urban...

Water Services
Golder’s Water Services Group provides you with a specialized science and environmental engineering team dedicated to delivering...

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