New Jersey Water Science Center
Great Falls of the Passaic River at Paterson, N.J.
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Ground-Water Status & Trends, NAWQA
Project Title: Ground-Water Status & Trends, NAWQA
The USGS National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program addresses three long-term goals:
Objective (T1) Determine long-term trends and changes in the concentrations of NAWQA target constituents in (a) 16 principal aquifer systems of the U.S. that have high use for drinking water and are representative of major aquifer lithologies, and (b) recently recharged ground water upgradient of these principal aquifers in a nationally representative range of hydrologic and land-use settings.
Objective (T3) - Determine the effects of urbanization on the concentrations and distributions of NAWQA target constituents in shallow or recently recharged ground water.
Objective (T5) - Determine the effects of long-term changes in agricultural management practices on the concentrations and distributions of NAWQA target constituents in shallow or recently recharged ground water.
Strategy and Approach
Achievement of these objectives within the NAWQA budget for ground-water trend assessment requires careful selection of relatively few studies. For example, some study units, particularly those not overlying a principal aquifer system, may not contain ground-water trend studies that are part of the NAWQA trends network. The following characteristics, which sometimes conflict, are used in selecting studies and determining sampling strategies.
The main focus of the NAWQA trend network design is to resample, by a three-tiered sampling strategy, selected Cycle I ground-water studies. Additional new studies (not conducted during Cycle I) will be added to the NAWQA trends network after completing their initial status assessment in Cycle II. These selected new studies are necessary to improve coverage of the range of source, transport and effect conditions found across the United States.