Geologic Considerations in Artificial Recharge of Ground-Water Reservoirs in California
Draft on ground-water resources in California has increased at an accelerated rate since the turn of the century resulting in extractions of ground water in excess of the net natural recharge. As a result, ground water is being withdrawn from storage, water levels are declining, and critical overdraft conditions with attendant adverse effects are rapidly developing. This critical situation is being further aggravated by a decrease in natural recharge to the zone of saturation because of many factors including: lining of stream channels to achieve adequate flood-control protection; removal of domestic sewage and industrial wastes by community, city, and county sewage-disposal systems; blanketing of natural recharge areas with impervious sidewalks, streets, and buildings; and export of local waters. To plan for the fullest practicable development, conservation, control, protection, and utilization of all water resources for all beneficial purposes in all areas of the State, local ground-water resources must be developed to the fullest practicable extent. All available ground-water storage capacity must be utilized for cyclic storage not only for local waters but also for imported waters and to permit regulated re-use of imported waters. Artificial recharge offers a promising solution to the complex problem of restoring and maintaining ground-water reservoirs at an efficient operating capacity, and of preventing or minimizing overdraft and its attendant adverse consequences.
One of the major problems associated with artificial recharge is the determination of a range of sustained percolated rates which can be used in the selection of a new recharge site or in the