Academic journal article Journal of Environmental Health

The Use of a GIS to Compare the Land Areas Captured by Very Basic and Complex Wellhead Protection Area Models

Academic journal article Journal of Environmental Health

The Use of a GIS to Compare the Land Areas Captured by Very Basic and Complex Wellhead Protection Area Models

Article excerpt

* It is estimated that over 65 percent of Washington State citizens rely on groundwater as a source of drinking water.

* In some counties, the numbers approach 100 percent.

* The delineation of wellhead protection areas (WHPAs) is a proactive method of protecting the land areas around public water supply wells.

* A wellhead protection area is commonly defined as the surface and subsurface area that surrounds a well field, well, or spring that supplies a public drinking-water system.

* The Washington State Department of Health (WSDOH) accepts four methods for the delineation of these areas:

1. the calculated-fixed-radius (CFR) method,

2. the analytical method,

3. hydrogeologic mapping, and

4. the numerical flow/transport model.

* The analytical, hydrogeologic, and numerical models are generally considered to be superior to the CFR model.

* The hydrogeologic and numerical models are considered to be more sophisticated than the analytical model.

* The study reported here utilized a geographic information system (GIS) to compare the very basic CFR method with other methods for water systems in Whatcom County, Washington. …

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