The intense application of nitrogen-fertilizer to cropland in the midwestern United States has created concern about nitrate contamination of the region's aquifers. Since 1991, the US Geological Survey has used a network of 303 wells to investigate the regional distribution of nitrate in near-surface aquifers of the midwestern United States. Detailed land use and soil data were compiled within a 2 km radius of 100 unconsolidated wells in the regional network to determine relations to nitrate concentrations in groundwater. For land use, the amount of irrigated land was directly related to nitrate concentrations in groundwater. For soils, the general water table depth and soil factors associated with rates of water movement were directly related to nitrate concentrations in groundwater.
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Nitrate in groundwater of the midwestern United States: A regional investigation on relations to land use and soil properties
Houston, TX, United States
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Proceedings of the 1999 IUGG 99, the XXII General Assembly of the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics