A thick lens of fresh groundwater in the southern Lihue Basin, Kauai, Hawaii, USA

Hydrogeology Journal
By:  and 

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Abstract

A thick lens of fresh groundwater exists in a large region of low permeability in the southern Lihue Basin, Kauai, Hawaii, USA. The conventional conceptual model for groundwater occurrence in Hawaii and other shield-volcano islands does not account for such a thick freshwater lens. In the conventional conceptual model, the lava-flow accumulations of which most shield volcanoes are built form large regions of relatively high permeability and thin freshwater lenses. In the southern Lihue Basin, basin-filling lavas and sediments form a large region of low regional hydraulic conductivity, which, in the moist climate of the basin, is saturated nearly to the land surface and water tables are hundreds of meters above sea level within a few kilometers from the coast. Such high water levels in shield-volcano islands were previously thought to exist only under perched or dike-impounded conditions, but in the southern Lihue Basin, high water levels exist in an apparently dike-free, fully saturated aquifer. A new conceptual model of groundwater occurrence in shield-volcano islands is needed to explain conditions in the southern Lihue Basin.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title A thick lens of fresh groundwater in the southern Lihue Basin, Kauai, Hawaii, USA
Series title Hydrogeology Journal
DOI 10.1007/s10040-002-0233-5
Volume 11
Issue 2
Year Published 2003
Language English
Publisher Springer
Description 9 p.
First page 240
Last page 248