Construction of canals and enlargement of streams in Florida has been mostly to alleviate impact of floods and to drain wetlands for development. Land drainage and heavy pumpage from coastal water-table aquifers has degraded potable ground and surface water with saltwater. Control of saltwater intrusion is possible through implementation of certain hydrologic principles. State of Florida statute 373.033 provides for a saltwater-barrier line in areas of saltwater intrusion along canals. A saltwater-barrier line is defined as the allowable landward limit that a canal shall be constructed or enlarged or a stream deepened or enlarged without a salinity-control structure seaward of the saltwater-barrier line. The salinity control structure controls saltwater intrusion along a surface-water channel and assists in controlling saltwater intrusion into shallow aquifers. This report briefly reviews the fundamentals of saltwater intrusion in surface-water channels and associated coastal aquifers, describes the effects of established saltwater-barrier lines in Florida, and gives a history of the use and benefits of salinity-control structures. (Woodard-USGS).
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USGS Numbered Series
Saltwater-barrier line in Florida : concepts, considerations, and site examples