Groundwater Resource Mapping

Groundwater Resource Mapping

Canisteo Valley, New York

"The most productive aquifers in upstate New York consist of unconsolidated deposits of sand and gravel that occupy major river and stream valleys or lake plains and terraces. Ground water in these aquifers occurs under water-table (unconfined) or artesian (confined) conditions. Municipalities, industries, and farms have been built over many of these aquifers because they typically form flat areas that are suitable for development and generally provide an ample ground-water supply. This development, coupled with the high permeability of these deposits and shallow depth to the water table, makes these aquifers particularly susceptible to contamination from point sources such as landfills and petroleum storage and nonpoint sources such as urban and agricultural runoff" (quote from New York USGS).

Typical geologic cross section.

To enhance and promote proper development, management, and protection of the unconsolidated aquifers of upstate New York, the Department of Environmental Conservation has long partnered with the United States Geological Survey (USGS) to conduct mapping reports of groundwater resources of the state. USGS also partners with various local agencies. The distribution and hydrogeologic characteristics of the unconsolidated aquifers are presented at the 1:250,000 scale in a series of five maps published in 1988 on a cooperative basis between the USGS and DEC. Beginning in 1980 and continuing through today, the USGS has partnered with DEC and other entities to produce over 30 detailed hydrogeologic maps for selected aquifers at the 1:24,000 scale (see link in right margin). The aquifer maps generally include a series of 1:24,000 scale maps showing aquifer boundaries, surficial geology, location of wells and test holes, and the water-table or potentiometric surface.

A listing of cooperative publications with the USGS is availble at the NY-USGS website (see links below).

  • Detailed Aquifer Mapping
  • Cooperative Publications of NY USGS
  • Online Publications of NY USGS

  • USGS Publications Search Engine

  • Contact for this Page:

    Bureau of Water Resource Management
    Division of Water
    625 Broadway
    Albany, NY 12233-3508
    email us

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