Effects of increasing urbanization on ground- and surface-water resources in the Fraser River watershed

Science Center Objects

The USGS has assessed the effects of increasing urbanization on ground- and surface-water resources in the Fraser River watershed. The population of Grand County increased 93 percent between the years of 1970 and 1990. The majority of the new development in the watershed will rely on ground water and individual septic disposal systems (ISDS's). This study has assessed the potential effects of ISDS contamination on shallow ground-water quality.

This study also measured streamflow and the potential effects of urban growth on surface-water quality at one site (Fraser River below Crooked Creek at Tabernash, CO - 09033300) in the watershed. The results from this study will assist local entities develop efficient land and water-management practices.

    OBJECTIVES:

    1. Complete a retrospective analysis of all water-quality and water-quantity information available for the watershed.
    2. Assess current ground-water quality and quantity in areas of increasing urbanization.
    3. Determine effects of ISDS's on ground-water quality in areas of historic ISDS use.
    4. Assess surface-water quantity and quality at one site downstream from the majority of the urban land use in the watershed.