Regional Scientific Studies - Mojave Water Agency


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Regional Scientific Studies

The Mojave Water Agency has been entrusted with managing the long-term reliability of water resources  within an approximately 5,000 square mile area of the Mojave Desert.  To assist in the guidance and decision making necessary to support and protect these resources, MWA has worked closely with various entities to gather data and information, producing  scientific studies specific to regional subareas.  Results from these hydrogeologic assessments provide insight into available groundwater in storage, aquifer space available for water banking, review of the basin water budget, potential infiltration rates, groundwater flow direction(s), flow rates and water quality.
These reports, with maps detailing the area of study,  are available here for download.



Conceptual Hydrogeologic Model and Assessment of Water Supply and Demand
for the Centro and Baja Management Subareas
Mojave River Groundwater Basin

By Todd Engineers with Kennedy/Jenks Consultants
Issued  July 2013


The Baja and Centro Subareas are located in the lower portion of the Mojave River Basin, in the  Western Mojave Desert.  This Basin Conceptual Model was developed by integrating all previous studies, field investigations, and monitoring programs, providing a scientific foundation for groundwater management.  The information presented includes local  geology, land use, water use, climate and hydrologic conditions of the region through time.  Understanding the hydrogeology and water supply and demand conditions of the Subareas is critical to future groundwater management.
Map | Download Report (Zip File)


Oeste Hydrologic Sub-Area Hydrogeologic Report
By W. Richard Laton, John Foster, Michael Blazevic, John Velarde, Michael Cruikshank
In cooperation with the Mojave Water Agency
Issued  2009

Mojave Water Agency has worked closely with academic faculty and students of the Geological Sciences Department from the California State University at Fullerton  (CSUF) to assist with studying groundwater resource management issues in the Oeste Subarea.  This report analyses previously published data and new data on geology, hydrology, hydrogeology, groundwater chemistry, geography and climate.
Map | Download Report


Oeste Hydrologic Atlas

A condensed version of the Oeste Hydrologic Sub-area Report to provide generalized information for public consumption.






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Hydrogeologic Evaluation - Proposed R3 Project Mojave River Channel Area
Vicinity Hesperia, San Bernardino County, California

Prepared by Richard C. Slade & Associates LLC
Issued 2008

This report provides the findings and conclusions of the hydrogeologic evaluation of the proposed Regional Recharge and Recovery Project that is located along/near the channel of the Mojave River in the vicinity of Hesperia.  The project involves the construction of a put-and-take series of wells and transmission pipelines and the use of existing and proposed artificial spreading basins. The plan includes storing and artificially recharging surface water in new/proposed spreading basins in/along the Upper reach of the Mojave River, and extracting it at several new wells to the west and east of the river for conveyance to Victorville, Adelanto, Southern California Logistics Airport, and the Apple Valley region.
Map | Download Report


Basin Conceptual Model and Assessment of Water Supply and Demand
for the Ames Valley, Johnson Valley, and Means Valley Groundwater Basins

By Kennedy/Jenks/Todd LLC
Issued  2007

In this study, Bighorn-Desert View Water Agency and Mojave Water Agency evaluate management options  for water resources in the southwestern Mojave Desert within the Ames Valley, Johnson Valley, and Means Valley groundwater basins.  This study develops a technical foundation with the development of basin conceptual models describing the physical and  hydraulic conditions for each groundwater basin.  A second component includes analysis of current water supply and demand conditions of the region, with an assessment of future projections, supporting management decisions to ensure sustainable water supply.
Map | Download Report



Este Hydrologic Atlas

By Cal State University Fullerton, Department of Geological Sciences, Staff and Faculty
In cooperation with the Mojave Water Agency
Published 2005
This report provides information on the physiographic makeup, geomorphology, geology, stratigraphy, surface water drainage, groundwater flow, and water chemistry of the Este Hydrologic Sub-basin, located in the Lucerne Valley area.  The compilation of data demonstrates water-rock interactions, and is used to construct a basin-wide conceptual model.
Map | Download Report

Evaluation of Geohydrologic Framework, Recharge Estimates,
and Ground-Water Flow of the Joshua Tree Area,
San Bernardino County, California

By Tracy Nishikawa, John A. Izbicki, Joseph A. Hevesi, Christina Stamos, Peter Martin
In cooperation with the Joshua Basin Water District
Published 2004

With concern for long term sustainability of ground water in the Joshua Tree and Copper Mountain  ground-water basins, the USGS in cooperation with the Joshua Basin Water District, implemented this study to gain a better understanding of the basins’ geohydrologic framework.  Local communities have historically relied on ground water as the  sole source of water supply, and the need to implement an artificial recharge system may become necessary. Under the scope of this report, the USGS presents data for a better understanding of geohydrology of the ground-water basins, recharge development,  and ground-water flow model. Included is a collection of water-level and water-quality data, geologic and electric logs, and gravity data.
Map | Download Report


Simulation of Ground-Water Flow in the Mojave River Basin, California
By Christina L. Stamos, Peter Martin, Tracy Nishikawa, Brett F. Cox
In cooperation with the Mojave Water Agency
Published 2001 (Version 3)

The proximity of the Mojave River ground-water basin to the highly urbanized Los Angeles region  has led to rapid growth in population and, consequently, an increase in the demand for water.  The Mojave River, the primary source of surface water for the region, normally is dry – except for a small stretch that has perennial flow and periods  of flow after intense storms.  As a result, the region relies almost entirely on ground water to meet its agricultural and municipal needs.  Groundwater withdrawal since the late 1800’s has resulted in discharge, primarily from pumping wells, which exceeds natural recharge.  To plan for anticipated water demands, and for the effects of imported water on the basin, methods are needed to evaluate and project ground-water conditions that result from present and planned changes in the basin.  This study  is part of a series of studies started in 1992 by the U.S. Geological Survey as a part of southern California Regional Aquifer-System Analysis (RASA) program, in cooperation with the Mojave Water Agency.
Map | Download Report


Evaluation of the Source and Transport of High Nitrate Concentrations
in Ground Water, Warren Subbasin, California

By Tracy Nishikawa, Jill N. Densmore, Peter Martin, Johathon Matti
In cooperation with the Hi-Desert Water District and the Mojave Water Agency
Published 2003

An artificial recharge program that began releasing imported water from the California State Water  Project into recharge percolation ponds to supplement ground-water supply in Yucca Valley coincided with a spike in nitrate concentrations.  The concentrations exceeded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency maximum contaminant level. To understand the  effects of present and future artificial recharge in the Warren subbasin, this study, by the U.S. Geological Survey in cooperation with Hi-Desert Water District and Mojave Water Agency , evaluates sources of increased nitrate concentrations that occurred  after the start of the artificial recharge program, develops ground-water flow and solute transport models to better understand the source and transport of nitrates in the aquifer system, and utilizes the calibrated models to evaluate the possible effect  of a proposed conjunctive-use project.
Map | Download Report


Mojave River Transition Zone Recharge Project
Phase I Report  Transition Zone Hydrogeology
By URS Corporation
Published 2003

This report describes the interrelationship of hydrogeologic conditions governing the Transition  Zone (TZ) water bridge concept.  The water bridge is the physical and natural means by which surface and groundwater are conveyed to the Centro Subarea through the TZ from the upper Alto Subarea.  Phase I also entails evaluating the potential for artificial  recharge programs based on these interrelating concepts.
Map | Download Report


Mojave River Transition Zone Recharge Project
Phase II Report  Groundwater Supply and Demand
in the Transition Zone

By URS Corporation
Published 2003

This report was conducted to assess current and future water supply and demand conditions within  the Transition Zone and estimate the market for imported water and viability of recharge projects.
Map | Download Report


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