A digital model of two-dimensional groundwater flow was used to predict changes in the potentiometric surface of the Floridan aquifer resulting from groundwater development for proposed and existing phosphate mines during 1976-2000. The modeled area covers 15,379 km2 in west-central Florida. In 1975, groundwater withdrawn from the Floridan aquifer for irrigation, phosphate mines, other industries and municipal supplies averaged about 28,500 l/s. Withdrawals for phosphate mines are expected to shift from Polk County to adjacent counties to the south and west, and to decline from about 7,620 l/s in 1975 to about 7,060 l/s in 2000. The model was calibrated under steady-state and transient conditions. Input parameters included aquifer transmissivity and storage coefficient; thickness, vertical hydraulic conductivity, and storage coefficient of the upper confining bed; altitudes of the water table and potentiometric surface; and groundwater withdrawals. Simulation of November 1976 to October 2000, using projected combined pumping rates for existing and proposed phosphate mines, resulted in a rise in the potentiometric surface of about 6 m in Polk County, and a decline of about 4 m in parts of Manatee and Hardee counties. ?? 1979.
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Simulated changes in potentiometric levels resulting from groundwater development for phosphate mines, west-central Florida