Optimal Sustainable Ground-Water Quantity and Quality Planning in Salt Lake Valley Using USUGWM

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Journal/Book Title/Conference

VIIth World Congress on Water Resources

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To insure the sustainability of groundwater resources of adequate quality and quantity, appropriate strategies should be implemented. In complicated cases involving natural, legal, qualitative, quantitative, and economic aspects these strategies are not obvious. USUGWM (Utah State University Groundwater Model) is a large scale model that addresses some of these issues. The model can perform both simulation and optimization by using both the flow and transport equations embedded as constraints. USUGWM can be used to compute optimal strategies for multi-layer aquifer systems with various boundary conditions. The model is applied to the Salt Lake Valley. Discussed is the use of the model to:

  1. Maximize the steady-state pumping (Scenario A)
  2. Maximize the unsteady-state pumping for the next 20 years (considered as 2 stress periods of 10 years each) subject to a constraint that withdrawal at each pumping cell will not decrease, and pumping will be sustainable after the planning (Scenario B).
  3. Compute a strategy similar to scenario B, with additional emphasis on reducing the effect of quantity management on the quality of groundwater in the south western part of the study area (Scenario C). That involves attempting to maintain sulfate concentration at specified locations within a tolerable range and at the same time preventing the movement of water of low quality down to the principal aquifer where pumping is taking place.

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