Groundwater quality in the Chemung River, Eastern Lake Ontario, and Lower Hudson River Basins, New York, 2013

Open-File Report 2015-1168
Prepared in cooperation with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
By: , and 

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Abstract

In a study conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in cooperation with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, water samples were collected from 4 production wells and 4 domestic wells in the Chemung River Basin, 8 production wells and 7 domestic wells in the Eastern Lake Ontario Basin, and 12 production wells and 13 domestic wells in the Lower Hudson River Basin (south of the Federal Lock and Dam at Troy) in New York. All samples were collected in June, July, and August 2013 to characterize groundwater quality in these basins. The samples were collected and processed using standard USGS procedures and were analyzed for 148 physiochemical properties and constituents, including dissolved gases, major ions, nutrients, trace elements, pesticides, volatile organic compounds, radionuclides, and indicator bacteria.

The Chemung River Basin study area covers 1,744 square miles in south-central New York and encompasses the part of the Chemung River Basin that lies within New York. Two of the wells sampled in the Chemung River Basin are completed in sand and gravel, and 6 are completed in bedrock. Groundwater in the Chemung River Basin was generally of good quality, although properties and concentrations of some constituents—sodium, arsenic, aluminum, iron, manganese, radon-222, total coliform bacteria, and Escherichia coli bacteria—equaled or exceeded primary, secondary, or proposed drinking-water standards. The constituent most frequently detected in concentrations exceeding drinking-water standards (six of eight samples) was radon-222.

The Eastern Lake Ontario Basin study area covers 3,225 square miles in north-central New York. The Eastern Lake Ontario Basin (between the Oswego River Basin and the St. Lawrence River Basin) includes the Mid-Northern Lake Ontario Basin, the Black River Basin, and the Chaumont River-Perch River Basin. Five of the wells sampled in the Eastern Lake Ontario Basin are completed in sand and gravel, and 10 are completed in bedrock. Groundwater in the Eastern Lake Ontario Basin was generally of good quality, although properties and concentrations of some constituents—color, pH, sodium, dissolved solids, fluoride, iron, manganese, uranium, gross-α radioactivity, radon-222, total coliform bacteria, and fecal coliform bacteria—equaled or exceeded primary, secondary, or proposed drinking-water standards. The constituent most frequently detected in concentrations exceeding drinking-water standards (10 of 15 samples) was radon-222.

The Lower Hudson River Basin study area covers 5,607 square miles and encompasses the part of the Lower Hudson River Basin that lies within New York plus the parts of the Housatonic, Hackensack, Bronx, and Saugatuck River Basins that are in New York. Twelve of the wells sampled in the Lower Hudson River Basin are completed in sand-and-gravel deposits, and 13 are completed in bedrock. Groundwater in the Lower Hudson River Basin was generally of good quality, although properties and concentrations of some constituents—pH, sodium, chloride, dissolved solids, arsenic, aluminum, iron, manganese, radon-222, total coliform bacteria, fecal coliform bacteria, Escherichia coli bacteria, and heterotrophic plate count—equaled or exceeded primary, secondary, or proposed drinking-water standards. The constituent most frequently detected in concentrations exceeding drinking-water standards (20 of 25 samples) was radon-222.

Suggested Citation

Scott, T.-M., Nystrom, E.A., and Reddy, J.E., 2015, Groundwater quality in the Chemung River, eastern Lake Ontario, and lower Hudson River Basins, New York, 2013: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2015–1168, 41 p., appendixes, http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ofr20151168.

ISSN: 2331-1258 (online)

Study Area

Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgments
  • Abstract
  • Introduction
  • Methods of Investigation
  • Groundwater Quality
  • Summary
  • References Cited
  • Appendix 1.  Results of Water-Sample Analyses, 2013
  • Appendix 2.  Results of Water-Sample Analyses, 2008 and 2013

Additional publication details

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Groundwater quality in the Chemung River, Eastern Lake Ontario, and Lower Hudson River Basins, New York, 2013
Series title Open-File Report
Series number 2015-1168
DOI 10.3133/ofr20151168
Year Published 2015
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) New York Water Science Center
Description Report: viii, 39 p.; Appendixes: 1-2
Time Range Start 2013-01-01
Time Range End 2013-12-31
Country United States
State New York
Other Geospatial Chemung River Basin, Eastern Lake Ontario Basin, Lower Hudson River Basin
Online Only (Y/N) Y
Additional Online Files (Y/N) Y