Guam students, Guam Waterworks join to monitor island's northern aquifer in support of increased
WERI research assistant and graduate Environmental Science student, Vivianna Bendixson, assisting USGS hydrogeologist, Todd Presley, with water level and conductivity measurements at deep monitoring well, EX-8, in the Agafa Gumas Basin
A $3.7 million collaboration between University of Guam's Water and Environmental Research Institute, the U.S. Geological Survey and Guam Waterworks should produce better monitoring of wells tapping the island's critical northern aquifer.
The project is rehabilitating and installing scientific water monitoring wells for the aquifer. The project aims to monitor the aquifer providing additional data and production capacity in relation to the imminent military buildup.
In 2016, the Department of Defense Office of Economic Adjustment granted nearly $4 million to GWA for the rehabilitation and installation of almost 20 wells throughout the island to expand groundwater monitoring in anticipation of the proposed military buildup activities. WERI will receive more than half a million dollars to provide technical support in the drilling process and to collect and interpret data.
Within the next year, GWA will install up to seven new water wells on military property located in northern Guam for which WERI and USGS will provide technical support. WERI and USGS will also assist in rehabilitating up to 12 existing wells—seven deep-water wells and five water-level monitoring wells—throughout civilian land as part of the One-Guam Well Installation and Rehabilitation Project.
Through a separate 10-year project titled the One Guam Aquifer Monitoring Program funded by GWA and DOD, WERI will extract and interpret hydrologic data from these new and rehabilitated wells and provide scientific advice for effective management of Guam’s drinking water resources.
“This is very important for understanding the impact of our pumping, both civilian and military, of our island’s aquifer,” said Dr. John Jenson, Director of WERI.
These projects also provide opportunities for graduate students to participate in leading-edge water-resources research.
“Several components of this project will be worthy of a graduate thesis project,” Jenson said.”