A program was designed for the systematic monitoring of ground-water quality in Nevada. Basic hydrologic and water-quality principles are discussed in the formulation of a rational approach to developing a statewide monitoring program. A review of ground-water monitoring efforts in Nevada through 1977 indicates that few requirements for an effective statewide program are being met. A suggested program has been developed that consists of five major elements: (1) A Background-Quality Network to assess the existing water quality in Nevada aquifers, (2) a Contamination Source Inventory of known or potential threats to ground-water quality, (3) Surveillance Networks to monitor ground-water quality in selected hydrographic areas, (4) Intensive Surveys of individual instances of known or potential ground-water contamination, and (5) Ground-Water Data File to manage data generated by the other monitoring elements. Two indices have been developed to help assign rational priorities for monitoring ground water in the 255 hydrographic areas of Nevada: (1) A Hydrographic-Area Priority Index for surveillance monitoring, and (2) A Development-Potential Index for background monitoring of areas with little or no current development. Requirements for efficient management of data from ground-water monitoring are discussed and the three major systems containing Nevada ground-water data are reviewed. More than 11,000 chemical analyses of ground water have been acquired from existing systems and incorporated into a prototype data base.
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A ground-water-quality monitoring program for Nevada